ACLU’s FREADom Event Tonight | Blogh

Monday, September 22, 2014

ACLU’s FREADom Event Tonight

Posted By on Mon, Sep 22, 2014 at 2:20 PM

Suppressed opinions, books that have been pulled from library shelves, and more will be celebrated at this free annual ACLU of Pennsylvania Greater Pittsburgh Chapter event.

The line-up of local celebrities reading banned or challenged works as part of national Banned Books Week includes WESA’s Paul Guggenheimer, Moth StorySLAM host Alan Olifson, famed mime expert Dan Kamin … and artist and activist Vanessa German going country (sort of).

Guggenheimer will read from Huckleberry Finn, perenially controversial in schools for its period-appropriate use of “nigger.” Comedian Olifson will read from Kurt Vonnegut’s essay “Cold Turkey.” Kamin — the world-renowned, Pittsburgh-based performer and Charlie Chaplin expert who tutored both Robert Downey Jr. and Johnny Depp for Chaplin-related film roles — will perform a tribute to Chaplin, whose political opinions were often controversial in his own time.

German, known for her spoken-word work, will read from four songs by the Dixie Chicks, whose on-stage criticism of President George W. Bush during the run-up to the invasion of Iraq famously got them banned from country radio. (The songs selected include “Goodbye Earl and “Not Ready to Make Nice.”)

Other readers include “library ladies” Ginny Beck and Maggie McFalls. And students from the Hope Academy of Music and the Arts will perform John Lennon’s “Imagine” and CSNY’s “Ohio.”

The event, cosponsored by WESA 90.5 and the Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh, also features video of banned print and television ads.

The show starts at 7 p.m. in the Jewish Community Center’s Katz Auditorium, 5738 Darlington Road, in Squirrel Hill.

For more information, call 412-681-7736 or

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