Free events include concerts, theater, visual art, readings and more.
May 1, 2014
CHICAGO – The Poetry Foundation is pleased to announce our May offerings. Except when otherwise noted, all events are free and open to the public and at the Poetry Foundation, 61 West Superior Street, Chicago. More information about our May events is available at poetryfoundation.org/programs/events. Images are available upon request.
The Harriet Reading Series features established and emerging poets whose innovative approaches to the craft of poetry have appeared on Harriet, the Poetry Foundation’s blog. Poet and novelist Joyelle McSweeney is the winner of the inaugural Leslie Scalapino Award for Innovative Women Playwrights. Co-editor of Action Books and a contributing writer to the culture blog Montevidayo, McSweeney teaches at the University of Notre Dame. The editor of African American Literature: Revised Edition (2008) and author of five poetry collections, Tyrone Williams creates work that challenges and investigates language, history and race.
Poetry off the Shelf Adrian Matejka Wednesday, May 7, 7:00 pm Poetry Foundation Free Admission
Poet Adrian Matejka, whose poems were included in the January 2014 issue of Poetry, reads at the Poetry Foundation. Matejka was born in Nuremberg, Germany, and grew up in California and Indiana. He earned his BA from Indiana University and his MFA from Southern Illinois University-Carbondale. He is the author of the poetry collections The Devil’s Garden (2003), which won a New York/New England Award from Alice James Books; Mixology (2009), a National Poetry Series selection and nominee for an NAACP Image Award; and The Big Smoke (2013), which was a finalist for the National Book Award. He has received fellowships from the Illinois Arts Council, Cave Canem, and the Lannan Foundation. Matejka teaches creative writing at Indiana University in Bloomington.
A reading and reception commemorates the 20th anniversary of Red Hen Press. Award-winning poet B.H. Fairchild explores the empty landscapes of small towns in Texas and Kansas, where he grew up. In 2014, W.W. Norton will publish Fairchild’s The Blue Buick: New and Selected Poems. Peggy Shumaker was Alaska State Writer Laureate, 2010 – 2012. Toucan Nest (2013), her most recent collection, grew from an eco-arts writing workshop in Costa Rica.
Britten, Prokofiev and Shostakovich embody one of the most colorful and accessible threads in mid-20th century music. Each used his music – both on concert stages and in tandem with emerging media such as radio and film – to connect swiftly with worldwide audiences and to engage young ears with the powers of classical composition. The Chicago Symphony is celebrating this important current in classical music from the last century with a three-week festival. Join us as CSO artistic programming advisor Gerard McBurney presents a talk and Q&A on these composers’ music, inspirations, outlooks, and lasting influence.
Poetry Foundation will also present the following pre-concert talks at the Chicago Symphony Orchestra: May 22 – Robert Bird May 29 – Reginald Gibbons and Ilya Kutik May 30 – John Wilkinson June 8 – Clare Cavanagh
The Open Door series presents work from Chicago’s new and emerging poets and highlights the area’s outstanding writing programs on a monthly basis. Each hour-long reading features two Chicagoland college and graduate writing program instructors and two of their current or recent students. The Poetry Foundation presents the Open Door series on the third Tuesday of every month, September through May.
Poetry off the Shelf Joshua Beckman Wednesday, May 21, 12:30-1:30 pm Poetry Foundation Free Admission
Bring your lunch to an afternoon reading in our performance space. Joshua Beckman was born in New Haven, Connecticut, and attended Hampshire College. An editor at Wave Books, he is the author of Things Are Happening (1998), winner of the APR/Honickman First Book Award, Something I Expected to Be Different (2001), Your Time Has Come (2001), Shake (2006), and Take It (2009). Beckman co-edited State of the Union: 50 Political Poems (2008), an anthology of political poems, with Matthew Zapruder.He has also translated poems by Carlos Oquendo de Amat and Tomaž Šalamun. He lives in Seattle and in Brooklyn, New York.
The Bagley Wright Lecture Series seeks to provide leading poets with the opportunity to explore poetry and poetics subjects of deep interest to them and through financial and logistical support, to arrange for the delivery of several lectures that result from these investigations. These lectures aim to create lasting works of criticism and poetics that will help current practitioners in the art of poetry, along with scholars and general readers, to more fully understand poetry as it is written and read in our time. Lecturer Joshua Beckman will also speak at New York University, Seattle’s Bullitt Cabaret, ACT Theater, Library of Congress, The University of Arizona Poetry Center, and Harvard University as part of this series.
Co-sponsored with the Bagley Wright Lecture Series
About the Poetry Foundation The Poetry Foundation, publisher of Poetry magazine, is an independent literary organization committed to a vigorous presence for poetry in our culture. It exists to discover and celebrate the best poetry and to place it before the largest possible audience. The Poetry Foundation seeks to be a leader in shaping a receptive climate for poetry by developing new audiences, creating new avenues for delivery and encouraging new kinds of poetry through innovative literary prizes and programs. For more information, please visit poetryfoundation.org.
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