January February 1999 March
All events take place at the Writers House, 3805 Locust Walk, Philadelphia (U of P).
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- 5:30 PM: Penn and Pencil Club meeting
- 7:00 PM: Penn and Pencil Club presents Michael Swanwick.
Michael Swanwick has received the Nebula, Theodore Sturgeon, and World Fantasy awards for Stations of the Tide, "The Edge of the World," and "Radio Waves," respectively. His most recent books are The Iron Dragon's Daughter, Jack Faust, and a short story collection, A Geography of Unknown Lands. He lives in Philadelphia with his wife, Marianne Porter, and their son, Sean.
- 4:30 PM: Planning Committee meeting
- 7:00-9:00 PM Talking Film, Robeson House, and the Greenfield Intercultural Center present a talk from Barbara Savage on film, race, and representation in Oscar Micheaux's 1925 film Body and Soul.
Barbara Savage is the author of Broadcasting Freedom: Radio, War, and the Politics of Race, 1938-1948 (University of North Carolina Press, spring 1999) and recipient of the Smithsonian Institution Post-Doctoral Fellowship. She received her JD from Georgetown University and worked as a Senior Staff Attorney for the Reagan Administration. She is currently an Assistant Professor of History at The University of Pennsylvania.
- 7:00-9:00 PM: Kelly Writers House Fellow Inaugural Lecture: Gay Talese
Gay Talese is the author of many books in a category of nonfiction writing that has sometimes been called "the literature of reality," sometimes "the New Journalism," sometimes "fact fiction." Among these works are Thy Neighbor's Wife (1980), Unto the Sons (1992), The Kingdom and the Power (1969), Honor Thy Father (1971), and The Overreachers (1965). For the Spring 1999 semester, Gay Talese is the first Kelly Writers House Fellow, a project made possible by a generous grant from Paul Kelly. He is teaching Literary Non-fiction at the Writers House.
- 5:30-7:30 PM: Artist Guild Public Lecture Series presents Sebastian Mundheim
For nearly 10 years since she received her BFA in Fine Arts from Penn, artist and teacher Sebastienne Mundheim has worked collaboratively with neighborhood groups and elementary school students, as artist in residence at Fleisher Art Memorial in South Philadelphia, and through educational programming at the Rosenbach Museum and the Arthur Ross gallery. Mundheim weaves together the history, culture, and concepts found in visual and literary arts, through an art-making process. She was recently granted funding for an inter-school, arts-based collaborative, based upon the ideas and imagery from her own educational performance of James Joyce's Ulysses, at the Rosenbach Museum.
- 8:30-10:30 PM: Virgin House Band
- 2:00-5:00 PM: Saturday Reading Cooperative
- 4:00-6:30 PM: Mike Higgins performs Perihelia.
Mike Higgins is from New Ferry, which lies opposite of Liverpool, along the river Mersey. His music is very influenced by the phenomena of tree growth and the Beatles. This will be the first performance of Perihelia for solo piano (a 2 hour musically concatenating meditation preceded by an elucidation). "In art, it is hard to say anything as good as saying nothing."
- 8:00 PM: LIVE at the Writers House!
- 4:00 PM: Discussion of the poetry of Melanie Nielson and Heather Fuller
- 7:00 PM: Talking Film presents Brian De Palma.
- 7:00 PM: Philly Talks present Melanie Neilson and Heather Fuller.
MELANIE NEILSON was born in Tennessee, lived in San Diego, California for many years, and moved to New York City in 1983. Her books include _Natural Facts_ (Potes & Poets Press, 1996) _Prop and Guide_ (The Figures, 1991) and _Civil Noir_ (Roof, 1991). She is a graduate of the University of California, San Diego and Hunter College. Since 1989, she has co-edited _Big Allis_ magazine with Jessica Grim. She is a writer-producer for film and TV, and lives in Williamsburg, Brooklyn.
HEATHER FULLER is the author of _perhaps this is a rescue fantasy_ (Edge Books) and is the Poetry Editor for The Washington Review. Leslie Scalapino says "Heather Fuller's lines are 'moves' being made." Kristen Gallagher writes: "Moves being made around an urban environment where the speaker/writer of the poems is: not safe, on the defensive, still able to recognize and feel, acutely, the daily damage done to others, while attempting examination of events with equally disturbed artistic form. On page 37 of her book _perhaps this is a rescue fantasy_:who finds a child on the street not who leaves i ask you this much i ask you not who leaves who can say who finds not how hungry but who leaves you now how to call the foster into this that fragments at the core of trauma becoming form
- 7:00 PM: African American Studies Philadelphia Writers Series hosts playwright Ed Shockley speaking on "African American Theatre Aesthetics: A Lecture and Demonstration".
Ed Shockley was born in South Philadelphia, the son of a registered nurse and an ex-con. After a youth spent as a student and athlete, he decided to "attempt reshaping the world with words." Mr. Shockley has worked with blues great Little Brother Montgomery, jazz trombonist Bobby Irving, saxophonist Bobby Zankel, and composer and novelist James McBride. Their second creation, Bobos, was awarded the Richard Rodgers Award and the Stephen Sondheim award for Outstanding Contributions to American Musical Theatre. Mr. Shockley has helped in the design and founding of the Rainbow Company, the Philadelphia Young Playwrights' Festival, Reality Crew, the Philadelphia Dramatists Center, and the American Concert Theatre. Mr. Shockley has a long list of published and produced plays, and books of poetry and prose. Current projects include Outlaw, a film directed by Joe Morton, starring Ruby Dee, Benjamin Bratt, and Charles Dutton; and Notes from a Practicing Writer, essays on the craft and art of playwrighting.
The above picture is from a production of Mr. Shockley's play Roll of Thunder, Hear My Cry, adapted from the novel by M.D. Taylor.
- 2:00-5:00 PM: Saturday Reading Cooperative
- 4:30 PM: reading by Peter Rock.
Peter Rock is the author of the novels This Is the Place and Carnival Wolves. He has been the recipient of a Henfield Award and a Stegner Fellowship at Stanford University. Born in Utah, he now lives in Philadelphia.
- 7:00 PM: An Anti-Violence Reading in Honor of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.
- Speakeasy and the International House's Neighborhood Film and Video Project collaborate on a night of spoken word!
6:30-8:30 PM: Screening of Slamnation at International House Neighborhood Film and Video Project, 3701 Chestnut Street.
8:30-10:30 PM: Speakeasy: Poetry, Prose and Anything Goes, an open mic performance night at Writers House
- CANCELLED: 5:00 PM: Multimedia Artist and Poet Gerd Stern: "Take The No Out of Now"
RSVP for dinner to follow.
Gerd Stern's book First Poems and Others was published in 1952. A second volume, Afterimage appeared in 1965. During the early sixties Stern started using cut out words to create visual collages, and soon after that started making kinetic pieces using flashing lights, and electro-mechanical components to construct poem sculptures. These were first shown at New York's Alan Stone Gallery and in Stern's first one-person show at the San Francisco Museum of Art. The next phase of work included multi-channel word visuals and sounds cut out of the real world, titled "the Verbal American Landscape." Influenced by Marshall McLuhan's written work, Stern appeared and was associated with McLuhan for a number of years. Stern was one of the founders of "USCO" a group of artists, engineers and poets creating multi-media performances and environments which toured the U.S. museum and university venues during the sixties. Their work appeared at the Museum of Modern Art, Brandeis University, University of California, Walker Art Museum, the Riverside Museum and many others. USCO also designed one of the first multi-media discotheques, named, "The World" featured on the cover of Life Magazine. Stern now lives in New Jersey and also spends time at his home, "Poetreef" on the island of Jamaica.
- 8:00 PM: Alpha Kappa Alpha Poetry Open Mic Night
- 2:00 PM: Laughing Hermit series presents A.V. Christie.
A.V. Christie was one of five poets named for the 1996 National Poetry Series for her first collection Nine Skies. Most recently she was writer-in-residence at Villanova University for the 1997-98 academic year.
- 2:00-5:00 PM: Saturday Reading Cooperative
- 11:00 PM: LIVE at the Writers House airs on WXPN, 88.5 FM!
- 6:00 PM: Philadelphia Inquirer commentary editor John Timpane, hosted by the Mellon Writing Group
John Timpane is the Commentary Page editor for the Philadelphia Inquirer. He came to this position in August 1997 after more than 20 years as a teacher of college English (specialties: Renaissance literature and composition theory) at Lafayette College, Rutgers University, the University of Southampton, Stanford University and elsewhere. He has a PhD in English and Humanities from Stanford. Throughout his undergraduate, graduate, and scholarly career, he wrote op-ed and perspective pieces for magazines and newspapers, and he had a flourishing freelance writing career that included film scripts, interactive video scripts, books (It Could Be Verse, about poetry; Writing Worth Reading, about composition), poetry, essays (on biotechnology for Science magazine), and research articles. He was also a writing coach at various companies and newspapers--which is how he and the Inquirer first fell in love. To make a long bio just a little longer, writing is what he's always done and always taught. He has loved all his old jobs and very much loves his new one. He lives near Princeton, N.J., with his wife, Maria-Christina Keller (copy chief of Scientific American), and two children.
- 5:00 PM: An Evening with Alfred Farag
The AMES department has invited the distinguished Egyptian dramatist Alfred Farag to give a talk on his contribution to Arab theatre. Accompanying Mr. Farag's talk will be a performance (both in Arabic and English) of his latest one-act play "The Last Walk," directed by Dina Amin and performed by Vanya Exerjian, an Egyptian professional actress who has been invited to perform the play in New York and at Penn.
Alfred Farag is a major Egyptian playwright who has addressed, more than anyone else, himself most successfully through the process of establishing drama in the Arab world as both a contribution to the corpus of literary texts and as a completly performable public spectacle. The evening with Alfred Farag will start with the presentation of the play at 5:00pm. At 5:40pm Mr. Farag will give a talk for thirty minutes entitled "My Contribution to Theatre," and following that there will be an open discussion.
- 7:00 PM: Talking Film presents A Closer Look at Pedro Almodovar. The Closer Look series explores the work of contemporary directors by taking a closer look at scenes from some of their films.
- 7:00 PM: Reading by poet Mwatabu Okantah
Mwatabu Okantah is a poet and the author of To Sing a Dark Song (1977), Afreeka Brass (1983), Collage (1984), and the first epic poem published by an African American, Cheikh Anta Diop: Poem for the Living (1997). Okantah is a professor in Pan-African Studies at Kent State University.
- 3:00 PM: "Aesthetic Imperialism: Kant, Literature, and the Conquest of India," a talk by Henry Schwarz, Professor of English at Georgetown University. Sponsored by the program in Comparative Literature and Literary Theory.
- 8:00 PM: Virgin House Band
- 8:00-10:00 PM: Full Circle, an Open Mic for Philadelphia-area poets, hosted by Cecily Kellogg and Charlie O'Hay. This Saturday the evening will feature the editors of and contributors to Siren's Silence, a local and rapidly growing magazine. Editors Lora Bloom and Jeanine Campbell and contributors will read. An open reading will follow.
- 6:00 PM: Alumni Writers Series presents a reading by J. Robert Lennon, whose book the funnies was just released by Riverhead Books.
J. Robert Lennon is the author of The Light of Falling Stars, which won Barnes & Noble's 1997 Discover Great New Writers Award. His short fiction has appeared in Story, Fiction, and American Short Fiction. He lives with his wife and son in Ithaca, New York.
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