poetry

The Secret City Art Revival in Woodstock, New York is a weekend of art, community and celebration throughout the town. This year’s event is entitled “Back to The Garden.”

Events take place July 25-28 and include parties, concerts, puppeteer-led hat-making; house events that include poetry readings, jazz house concerts, site-specific dances, art salons; brunch, karaoke, a Community Processional and – the culminating event – The Artistic Tent Revival.

The Secret City is an Obie Award winning arts organization that programs regularly in New York, Los Angeles, and Woodstock with guest appearances in other parts of the country and a weekly radio show in Kingston, New York.

We are joined by Secret City Founding Artistic Director Chris Wells and Lead designer of the Sunday processional and the Sunday revival Nancy Geaney.

Rhett Miller is the frontman for rock band Old 97′s, a solo singer-songwriter, an essayist and a podcaster. And he’s also a father of two, which indirectly led to his newest gig of picture-book writer - his book is “No More Poems! A Book in Verse That Just Gets Worse.”

He started writing poems to share with his kids on the phone while he was on tour so he could talk with them longer. He’d read the poems aloud and get their feedback (sometimes brutal feedback.)

Between albums with the band, Miller has squeezed in seven solo records—most recently last year’s "The Messenger." His latest offering is a new podcast, "Wheels Off," which finds him interviewing musicians, writers, artists, actors, and comedians about creativity. 

  This week's Book Picks from Lily Bartels at The Open Door Bookstore and Gift Gallery in Schenectady, NY.

List:
"Inheritance: A Memoir of Genealogy, Paternity, and Love" by Dani Shapiro
"Never Home Alone: The Natural History of Where We Live" by Rob Dunn
"The Dakota Winters" by Tom Barbash
"After Emily: Two Remarkable Women and the Legacy of America's Greatest Poet" by Julie Dobrow
"The Travelling Cat Chronicles" by Hiro Arikawa
"Sing a Song of Seasons: A Nature Poem for Each Day of the Year" by Nosy Crow and Fiona Waters

Djelloul Marbrook is the author of ten poetry books and ten fiction books. He has won the Stan & Tom Wick Poetry Prize, the International Book Award in poetry, and the Literal Latté fiction award for "Artist's Hill."

His poetry and fiction has been widely published in journals and anthologies. He lives in the mid-Hudson Valley and had a long newspaper career including stints at the Providence (RI) Journal, the Elmira (NY) Star-Gazette, the Baltimore Sun, and the Washington Star.

His new poetry volume – “The Seas Are Dolphins’ Tears” is just out - as is his trilogy of novels.

In 2012 Sarah Ruhl was a distinguished author and playwright, twice a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize. Max Ritvo was a student in her play writing class at Yale University. He was an exuberant, opinionated, and highly gifted poet. He was also in remission from pediatric cancer. Over the next four years in which Ritvo's illness returned and his health declined, even as his productivity bloomed, the two exchanged letters that spoke with urgency, humor, and the desire for connection. They talked about everything reincarnation, the afterlife, an Amtrak quiet car, good soup. All of it in the letters. The letters have now been published in a book titled, "Letters From Max: A Book Of Friendship".

Joining us today is Sarah Ruhl.

Jessica Hornik will be reading and signing "A Door on the River: Poems" at three events over the next few weeks. She will be at the Book House of Stuyvesant Plaza in Albany, New York tonight, at Russell Sage in Troy, New York on October 25, and she will participate in the Volume Reading Series at Spotty Dog Books and Ale in Hudson, New York on November 10.

In her first book, Hornik’s poems carry power rooted in nature, place, and family. "A Door on the River" marks the emergence of a beautiful, confident voice in the landscape of American poetry. Jessica Hornik was born in Albany and was raised in Clifton Park. She earned degrees from Cornell and New York University.

Jason Butler Harner and Janet McTeer in Roundabout Theatre Company's "Bernhardt/Hamlet"
Joan Marcus

Last night, The Roundabout Theatre Company opened a new play by Theresa Rebeck at The American Airlines Theatre in New York City. Directed by Moritz von Stuelpnagel, “Bernhardt/Hamlet” is set just before the turn of the 20th Century when the acclaimed and adored Sarah Bernhardt stages a production of William Shakespeare’s “Hamlet” with herself in the title role of the halting and hesitant Prince of Denmark.

In “Bernhardt/Hamlet,” the divine Sarah is inhabited by Golden Globe, Tony, and Olivier Award-winning actress, Janet McTeer. Bernhardt as penned by Rebeck is having an affair with poet and playwright, Edmond Rostand who is played by our guest, Jason Butler Harner.

Harner’s previous Broadway credits include “The Crucible” and “The Coast of Utopia.” He’s performed Off-Broadway, as well, earning OBIE and Drama Desk nominations. His major film debut came in Clint Eastwood’s Oscar-nominated film “Changeling” and he currently stars on the Netflix series “Ozark.”

Bard SummerScape 2018

Jun 29, 2018
Jack Ferver as Tinker Bell in “Peter Pan” at Bard SummerScape festival. (Credit Lauren Lancaster for The New York Times) -- and Kathleen Chalfant (credit - playwrightshorizons.org)
Lauren Lancaster for The New York Times (Peter Pan); playwrightshorizons.org (Chalfant)

The fifteenth annual Bard SummerScape festival features seven weeks of world-class opera, theater, dance, cabaret, film, and music, including the 29th annual Bard Music Festival, “Rimsky-Korsakov and His World.”

Gideon Lester, Director of Theater and Performance Programs at Bard and Artistic Director for SummerScape Dance's “Four Quartets” is here along with acclaimed actress Kathleen Chalfant, who is performing in “Four Quartets” as the narrator reading T.S. Eliot's poems.

"Four Quartets" is a World Premiere/SummerScape Commission with poetry by T. S. Eliot, choreography by Pam Tanowitz, music by Kaija Saariaho performed by The Knights, and images by Brice Marden.

We will also learn about a new production of Leonard Bernstein's Peter Pan.

Brad Gooch is a poet, novelist, and biographer, whose most recent book is Rumi's Secret: The Life of the Sufi Poet of Love. He is the author of ten previous works, including: the memoir Smash Cut; the acclaimed biography of Frank O'Hara, City Poet; and Flannery: A Life of Flannery O'Connor, which was a finalist for a National Book Critics Circle Award in Biography, a New York Times Notable Book of the Year, and New York Times best seller. The recipient of National Endowment for the Humanities and Guggenheim fellowships, he earned his Ph.D. at Columbia University and is Professor of English at William Paterson University in New Jersey.

In Rumi's Secret, Gooch brings to life the man and puts a face to the name Rumi, vividly coloring in his time and place—a world as rife with conflict as our own.

“The Children Are Reading” is a new collection of poetry by Gabriel Fried that takes readers into the magically dark and twisted worlds of children’s literature and children’s imaginations, as well as the fearful fantasies of the adults who care for them.

Gabriel Fried is the author of "Making the New Lamb Take," winner of the Kathryn Morton Prize, which was named a top poetry collection of 2007 by Foreword Reviews and the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. He is also the editor of an anthology, "Heart of the Order: Baseball Poems," and longtime poetry editor of Persea Books. He teaches in the creative writing program at the University of Missouri.

Jamaican-born Everton Sylvester is a founding member of the Brooklyn Funk Essentials. He has been touring, writing, and recording with BFE for the past 25 years and half a dozen albums. Lead vocalist and/or writer on many of Funk Essentials’ most loved hits.

Everton’s spoken-word lyrics are set to deep Jamaican grooves by Searching for Banjo, lending the feel of a roots-reggae bash. Everton will be performing tracks from his just-released album “Trial Separation,” as well as some Brooklyn Funk Essentials classics when he performs on Sunday night at 7PM at Helsinki Hudson as part of The Rogovoy Salon series. 

Tyehimba Jess’ poetry serves as a bridge between “slam poetry” and other American verse traditions. His second collection Olio, which celebrates the unrecorded and largely unknown Black musicians and orators of the 19th and early 20th centuries, won the 2017 Pulitzer Prize.

Our dear friend and colleague Paul Elisha passed away two years ago at the ago of 92. Now, his friends have joined together to publish Neap Tide - a collection of his unpublished poems.

Paul's passions and endeavors included: Veteran and military historian, poet and musician, radio host, longtime state government public relations person and civic volunteer and civil rights activist. But, here on WAMC, much of our audience knew Paul for his incisive commentaries, music programming and host of the poetry program, A Bard’s Eye View.

Paul’s friends Stu Bartow and Barbara Ungar worked with the family to collect unpublished poems together for the new collection. 

Basilica Hudson, in partnership with Community of Literary Magazines and Presses will once again have its celebration of literature and food: Read & Feed, which will take place from 12PM - 5PM this Sunday.

The festival includes a celebration of legendary Hudson-based poet John Ashbery’s 90th birthday, acclaimed food writers and chefs presenting demonstrations and interactive discussions, a superstar collection of authors offering literary performances and novel conversations, a marketplace featuring some of America’s most intriguing small literary publishers and artisanal food makers.

Melissa Auf der Maur, Co-founder and Director of Basilica Hudson, and Jeffrey Lependorf, CLMP’s Executive Director, join us.

It is National Poetry Month and to celebrate, we welcome one of our favorites to the program this morning. Djelloul Marbrook will tell us about his latest collection: Riding Thermals to Winter Grounds.

Djelloul Marbrook was born in Algiers and grew up in New York. He served in the U.S. Navy and for many years was a newspaper reporter and editor. His awards include the Wick Poetry Prize and the International Book Award in Poetry. He hails from New York's mid-Hudson Valley. 

Jay Rogoff is the author of six books of poetry. His latest full-length collection, Enamel Eyes, A Fantasia On Paris, 1870, a lyrical sequence with the breadth and depth of a historical novel, considers the events of "the terrible year" through multiple perspectives.

The Franco-Prussian War, the siege of Paris, and the Commune come alive through the eyes and voices of a variety of historical figures who witnessed and participated in the events.

Jay Rogoff will have a poetry reading on Friday night at the Northshire Bookstore in Saratoga to celebrate his new collection, Enamel Eyes, A Fantasia on Paris, 1870. 

Love lurks behind many a musical inspiration, which has inspired the Musicians of Ma’alwyck to put together a program celebrating the music, movement, and poetry of that grand, elusive feeling. Love-music somber and love-music sweet are the heart of the Valentine’s Day concert “Suite of Love,” which weaves poetry and dance into a garland of musical selections written by Bach, Schumann, Mozart, and others.

Beth Fecteau is creating dance pieces for her company, Nacre, to both the words and music; the text, much of it inspired by the writings of the composers themselves, is being written by the eternally love stricken wordsmith Byron Nilsson; the words will be realized by actors from Creative License.

The concert will be performed on Saturday, February 11th at Cohoes Music Hall and on Sunday, February 12th at Schenectady County Community College. The concert combines music, poetry, and dance. Here now to tell us more are Ann-Marie Barker Schwartz, Beth Fecteau, and Byron Nilsson.

Since his first recordings in 1955, Johnny Cash has been an icon in the music world. Now comes a collection of his as-yet-unpublished poems adding to his already prolific number of original songs: Forever Words: The Unknown Poems.

In these words, we see the world through Cash’s eyes, his reflection upon his own interior reality, frailties and strengths alike. The poetry reveals his depth of understanding; both of the world around him and within. Coming from purely American and gospel traditions of song writing, Cash reflects upon love, pain, freedom, and mortality.

John Carter Cash, who has been involved in music all his life, is an accomplished and award-winning record producer as well as a singer-songwriter and recording artist. The only son to Johnny Cash and June Carter Cash, he is the author of three children’s books, and a biography of his father, one of his mother, and a fantasy novel, Lupus Rex

Stephen Burt
Alex Dakoulas

  Stephen Burt, “one of the most influential poetry critics of his generation” (The New York Times), will read from and discuss his new book, The Poem is You: 60 Contemporary American Poems and How to Read Them on Thursday, September 29 at 8 p.m. in the Huxley Theatre, New York State Museum, Cultural Education Center, Madison Avenue in downtown Albany.

Earlier that same day at 4:15 p.m., the author will hold an informal seminar in the Standish Room, Science Library on the UAlbany uptown campus. Free and open to the public, the events are sponsored by the New York State Writers Institute and the Friends of the New York State Library.

Today in our Ideas Matter segment we check in with Mass Humanities and learn about the Earthcare Festival at the William Cullen Bryant Homestead in Cummington, Massachusetts. The Festival—on September 9th, 10th, and 11th—marks the beginning of the newly created Hilltown Chautauqua of Western Massachusetts.

Events during the Festival weekend will explore the human relationship to nature and will feature a series of in-depth talks by nationally known figures in forest ecology, sustainability, and environmental writing, as well as poetry readings, music, and a one-woman play.

We are joined by David Perkins, founder of the Hilltown Chautaqua, and by Lauret Savoy, Professor of Environmental Studies, who will be participating in the Earthcare Festival.


  In this week’s Classical Music According to Yehuda, Alan Chartock and Yeuda Hanani continue their conversation about female composers focusing on Hildegard von Bingen and sharing her "O viridissima virga" performed by the women’s section of Voices of Ascension.

  In this week’s Classical Music According to Yehuda, Alan Chartock and Yehuda Hanani begins a series of conversations about female composers.

  In our Ideas Matter segment we take time just about every week to check in with the state humanities councils in our 7-state region.

Today we check in with Connecticut Humanities to discuss why poetry is important in today's society. Does teaching poetry in our schools really matter in this era of STEM and standardized testing?

We are joined today by Scott Wands, Manager of Grants at Connecticut Humanities who manages Poetry Out Loud in Connecticut, and Susan Ballek, Executive Director and CEO of the Hill-Stead Museum in Farmington, CT, home of the long running Sunken Garden Poetry Festival program.

  The Olana Partnership is presenting an illustrated lecture and book signing with acclaimed author Andrea Wulf at Hudson High School on Saturday, April 9 at 4pm. The event will be Wulf’s first East Coast stop on her United States and UK tour.

The Invention of Nature is Andrea Wulf’s newest her award winning biography that reveals the extraordinary life of the visionary German naturalist Alexander von Humboldt and how he created the way we understand nature today.

Perceiving nature as an interconnected global force, he turned scientific observation into poetic narrative, and inspired Frederic Church on numerous levels. Andrea Wulf joins us to talk about the book and her upcoming event.

  One hundred years after its first publication in August 1915, Robert Frost’s poem “The Road Not Taken” is so ubiquitous that it’s easy to forget that it is, in fact, a poem.

Widely admired as the poetry columnist for the New York Times Book Review, David Orr deftly illuminates the poem’s enduring greatness while revealing its mystifying contradictions, in The Road Not Taken: Finding America In The Poem Everyone Loves And Almost Everyone Gets Wrong.

Orr examines the poem’s cultural influence, its artistic complexity, and its historical journey from the margins of the First World War all the way to its place today as a true masterpiece of American literature.

deerbrookeditions.com

  Our dear friend and colleague, Paul Elisha, has died at the age of 92. Paul was an inspiration, a mentor and confidant. He was filled with wit, passion, integrity and an understanding of what made us better people. There was music and poetry which he dispensed with beauty and candor.

Paul had been a part of The Roundtable since its inception. He was a frequent commentator, he hosted our long-time "Performance Place" series, and would regularly interview noted poets for his "A Bard's Eye View" segment.

In remembrance of Paul we share two of these interviews. The first with William Jay Smith and the second with Djelloul Marbrook.

He’s being remembered as an Renaissance man. We’re honoring Paul Elisha today at WAMC — a  WWII veteran, poet, professional musician and longtime voice on these airwaves who died Sunday at 92 after suffering a stroke.

  Walt Whitman’s Drum-Taps: The Complete 1865 Edition is the first publication of Whitman’s original Civil War poetry collection since the bard himself published Drum-Taps over 150 years ago. Many of the poems in Drum-Taps eventually found their way into Leaves of Grass.

Lawrence Kramer is an English professor and musicologist at Fordham University and is especially interested in the sonic elements of Whitman’s poetry. He has set several of Whitman’s poems to music and has a unique perspective on this great American poet’s work as a result.

Prof. Kramer will be reading from and speaking about Drum-Taps at Oblong Books & Music in Rhinebeck, NY on Wednesday, August 5th.

  Basilica Screenings is a film series that presents an array of works from new and repertory narrative features, documentaries, experimental films – programmed by Basilica Hudson’s film curator, Aily Nash, and creative directors Melissa Auf der Maur and Tony Stone.

Melissa joins us now along with artist, Jack Walls whose exhibition “Paintings, Et Cetera” will open in the back gallery at Basilica Hudson this Friday and be on display through August 1st.

Jack Walls has been a fixture of the New York creative scene since the early 1980s, working primarily in collage and painting. He is also a poet and will read from The Ebony Prick of the White Rose’s Thorn with musical accompaniment by Harbour to celebrate the exhibition opening this Thursday. The opening event will also include a screening of the 1989 short doc, Eye to Eye – a film about Robert Mapplethorpe – Wall’s longtime partner and fellow artist.

Melissa Auf der Maur and Jack Walls join us.

http://www.umass.edu/english/member/james-tate

A Pulitzer Prize-winning poet and longtime English professor at the University of Massachusetts-Amherst has died. James Tate was 71.

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