The Adirondack Center for Writing is bringing the best performance poets of Brooklyn and Chicago to your doorstep. A performance by three spoken word poets on Thursday, October 28 at 7 p.m. will push and blur boundaries between music, art, theatre and literature. The Adirondack Center for Writing and Bluseed Studios present Word!, a night with Roger Bonair-Agard, Rachel Mckibbens, and Samantha Thornhill.
The trio, brought to the area by the Adirondack Center for Writing, will take the stage at 7:00 P.m. on Thursday, October 28 at Bluseed Studios, 24 Cedar Street (next to Aubuchon Hardware) in Saranac Lake. The event is free and open to the public (although donations are appreciated). In short, these three are to poetry what hip hop is to music: cutting edge, full of rhythm and style and bound to smash stereotypes.
“We’ve presented these poets at Bluseed for the past five years and every time the audience is completely astounded. After the performance the line of people coming up to talk to me about bringing them up again is as long as the line of people getting their books signed by the poets,” says Adirondack Center for Writing executive director, Nathalie Thill. “People can’t get enough because the poetry styles and presentation are so new and fresh, it is like nothing you can experience anywhere else in the area.”
For five years, the Adirondack Center for Writing has been bringing performance poets to the Adirondacks to lead two-day workshops to high school students. The workshops focus on improving students’ writing and teaching them how to present their work. On Thursday, in addition to teaching the high school workshop, Bonair-Agard, McKibbens, and Thornhill will take the stage at Bluseed Studios to show the public what all the excitement is about.
Roger Bonair-Agard is a native of Trinidad and Tobago, a Cave Canem fellow, and an author of two collections; tarnish and masquerade (Cypher Books, 2006) and GULLY (Cypher Books, Peepal Tree Press, 2010). Co-founder of the louderARTS collective, Roger is a 2-time National Poetry Slam Champion, and an MFA candidate at the Stonecoast Program of the University of Southern Maine. Roger teaches poetry at the Cook County juvenile detention center, Young Chicago Authors, Fordham university and performs & teaches throughout the world. He lives mostly in Chicago.
Rachel McKibbens is the author of, Pink Elephant, a full-length book of poetry, and is a New York Foundation for the Arts poetry fellow and Pushcart nominee. Rachel is the 2009 Women of the World poetry slam champion, is an eight-time National Poetry Slam team member, and a three-time NPS finalist. She appeared on two seasons of HBO’s Russell Simmons Def Poetry Jam. She was featured in the slam documentary, Slam Planet: War of the Words which premiered at the 2006 SXSW film festival in Austin, Texas and has appeared twice on HBO’s Russell Simmons Presents Def Poetry.
Samantha Thornhill, a Trinidadian-born writer, is a rising star in the world of children’s literature. Her performance poem, Little Odetta, inspired by the late folk legend, is forthcoming from Scholastic Press in the form of a picture book for children and adults. In addition, her young adult novel Seventeen Seasons is being published by Penguin Books. Samantha earned her Masters degree (MFA) in poetry from the University of Virginia while coaching Virginia’s slam team, leading them to two consecutive victories. In New York City she fulfills her position as professor of poetry and performance at the Juilliard School.
The Adirondack Center for Writing is an independent non-profit, 501(c)3 organization dedicated to promoting literature and providing educational opportunities and support to both aspiring and established writers in the Adirondack region. We provide workshops, conferences, and readings throughout the year in locations all around the Adirondack Park. ACW is based at Paul Smith’s College and is supported by a strong membership and public funds from the New York State Council on the Arts, a state agency.