Open Circle Read & Response
Featuring: Daniele Evans, Dan Fesperman, and Slangston Hughes w/ live musical responses by Amadou Kouyate and live artistic responses by Christopher Kojzar. Curated by Amanda J. Fiore,
Event Type: music/performance
8pm | $5 suggested donation RSVP for advanced registration suggested
Prominent writers will share selections of their work in this unique interdisciplinary event. The night will be interspersed with live musical and artistic responses.
In the most dynamic Open Circle event to date, readers will include Dan Fesperman, who writes acclaimed novels of "intrigue and espionage"; Slangston Hughes, a local star and national slam-poetry champion; and Danielle Evans the newest faculty member at the Johns Hopkins Writing Seminars. The incomparable Amadou Kouyate, who is a "djembe and koutiro drummer" and also plays the 21-string kora, will provide a musical response to their thrilling writing. Former Creative Alliance resident artist Christopher Kojzar will make drawings in real time to the readings and present them during intermission and after the show.
The Open Circle Read & Response is an ongoing quarterly series that was first organized at the Creative Alliance by Amanda J. Fiore during her residency. Fiore is currently the Fiction Editor for The Baltimore Review, and a Writing Instructor at The University of Maryland at College Park.
The mission of the Open Circle Read & Response is to gather the too-often segmented community spheres – academic, grassroots, visual arts, and literary arts – and create one “open circle.” Hosted by Amanda Fiore, each “open circle” event has a distinct theme and features different combinations of readers and artistic responses. A suggested donation of $5 per audience member supports the continuation of the program. The Open Circle Reading Series is open to all members of the community.
Supported by the National Endowment for the Arts Artworks: Artist Communities Grant
Writer, Musician, and Artist Bios:
Danielle Evans is the author of the story collection Before You Suffocate Your Own Fool Self, winner of the PEN American Robert W. Bingham prize, the Hurston-Wright award, the Paterson Prize, and a National Book Foundation 5 under 35 selection. Her stories have appeared in magazines and anthologies, including The Paris Review, A Public Space, American Short Fiction, Callaloo, New Stories From the South, and The Best American Short Stories. She teaches creative writing at the University of Wisconsin-Madison.
Slangston Hughes is a National Slam Champion from Baltimore, Maryland and has won many prestigious competitions and awards. Hughes also gives back to the community as the Director of Youth Poetry at Dew More Baltimore and lead coach of the world champion Baltimore City Youth Poetry Team. Slangston Hughes was the first ever Word War grand slam champion in 2008 (Baltimore) and the 2010 Baltimore Crown Awards "Poet of the Year" recipient. His work has been published in the Poets‘ America anthology via the Kratz Creative Writing Center. Slangston published his first collaborative literary work Writers’ Alchemy with prosaist Devlon E. Waddell as part of E.M.B.O.D.Y. Additionally, Slangston is the founder of Speak Out: Slammageddon. Slangston was also a member of the Slammageddon Baltimore slam team that won the 2016 National Poetry Slam and 2017 Southern Fried Regional Slam.
LINKS TO MEDIA FOR SLANGSTON HUGHES
Dan Fesperman’s ten novels of intrigue and espionage have won acclaim on both sides of the Atlantic, winning the Dashiell Hammett award in the United States and two Dagger awards in the UK. A former foreign correspondent for the Baltimore Sun, his travels as a writer have taken him to three war zones and more than thirty countries. His latest book, The Letter Writer, was named one of the ten best mysteries of 2016 by the New York Times. He lives in Baltimore.
Christopher Kojzar is a visual artist who currently lives in Baltimore. An MFA candidate at UMBC’s Intermedia and Digital Arts program. Christopher was a Creative Alliance resident artist from 2013 to 2016. He is also a professional prop maker for television productions on Bravo, Netflix & HBO and has exhibited and performed across the U.S. and abroad in Europe and South America.
Amadou Kouyate is the 150th generation of the Kouyate family of Manding Diali (oral historians/musicians of West Africa) and the first of his father’s lineage to be born in America. Amadou performs on the 21-string Kora, and rhythmic presentations on Djembe and Koutiro drums. His repertoire ranges from traditional songs from the 13th century to contemporary original compositions that incorporate blues and jazz riffs. His credits include performances at The Kennedy Center, Smithsonian Institution, Bristol Academy and Isle of White (England), Tim Festival (Brazil), Lowell, Baltimore Rhythm Festival,East-Lansing and Dayton National Folk Festivals, Intersections Festival (DC), DanceAfrica DC, Atlanta and Chicago, with The National Symphony Orchestra, Carnegie Hall with Sweet Honey in The Rock, National Geographic, The Creative Alliance and the Victoria World Rhythm Festival.
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