Farewell to a Friend

With heavy yet grateful hearts, BCI celebrates the life and memory of our dear friend Wynne Paris.

Wynne was a one-of-a-kind free spirit with a heart of gold. A renowned musician and producer, Wynne specialized in world beat and kirtan. He performed all over the country alongside many notable musicians, including Krishna Das. With his life partner Kimberley Maddox and Woodstock producer Michael Lang, Wynne founded the Lovelight Yoga and Arts Festival. The goal of Lovelight is "to celebrate life with art, yoga, music, and dance to enlighten ourselves through community." Throughout his life, Wynne fulfilled this mission to the utmost.

Inspired by the bonobos' loving and peaceful society, Wynne dedicated himself to raising awareness of bonobos and their plight. In 2002, he helped BCI produce "Bonobo Radio One," a series of radio shows featuring traditional bonobo legends in the Congolese language, Lingala. As this was broadcast during the Second Congo War, it was imperative that people on all sides of the conflict heard the message to protect bonobos—and they did, thanks to Wynne.

He went on to do several benefits for BCI, including two at Jivamukti Yoga Center in New York and one at American University. He remained a close friend and dedicated supporter of BCI until his death on March 22nd.

While we mourn his sudden passing, we are filled with gratitude for Wynne and for all that he did to elevate, educate, and entertain everyone around him. When we picture a brighter future, one where humans follow the bonobos' lead, we picture a world full of people like Wynne: creative, joyful, generous, and loving. May his legacy of commitment and connection be an inspiration for all of us, and for generations to come.