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The Broad Stage Presents Rita Dove and Tracy K. Smith in POETRY AT THE CROSSROADS

It is moderated by interdisciplinary creative, activist and educator Amber Flame.

The Broad Stage Presents Rita Dove and Tracy K. Smith in POETRY AT THE CROSSROADS

The Broad Stage presents two United States poet laureates, both Pulitzer Prize winners, in Rita Dove and Tracy K. Smith: Poetry at the Crossroads, on Thursday, May 20 at 6pm PT, presented in partnership with esteemed Los Angeles based publisher Red Hen Press. It is moderated by interdisciplinary creative, activist and educator Amber Flame.

Rita Dove and Tracy K. Smith will share their thoughts on the crossroads of poetry that we now find ourselves in -- as a new generation of poets build on and elevate the form whose foundation is made of, in part, these two poets themselves.

Dr. Kate Gale, Co-Founder and Managing Editor of Red Hen Press, said, "Poetry is entered through the doors of the imagination; we see what has been done and we see what can be. Rita Dove and Tracy K. Smith have redefined what we can imagine."

Rita Dove won the Pulitzer Prize for her third book of poetry, Thomas and Beulah, in 1987 and was the U.S. Poet Laureate 1993-95. She received the National Humanities Medal from President Clinton and the National Medal of Arts from President Obama-the only poet ever to receive both. Her many honors include a 2017 NAACP Image Award (for Collected Poems 1974-2004) and the Academy of American Poets' Wallace Stevens Award. She is the Henry Hoyns Professor of Creative Writing at the University of Virginia. Her eleventh collection of poetry, Playlist for the Apocalypse, is forthcoming from W.W. Norton in 2021.

Tracy K. Smith received the 2012 Pulitzer Prize in poetry for her third book of poems, Life on Mars. The collection draws upon the genre of science fiction in considering who we humans are and what the vast universe holds for us. In poems of political urgency, tenderness, elegy and wit, Smith conjures version upon version of the future, imagines the afterlife, and contemplates life here on earth in our institutions, cities, houses and hearts. Life on Mars was a New York Times Notable Book, a New York Times Book Review Editors' Choice, and a New Yorker, Library Journal, and Publishers Weekly Best Book of the Year.

Moderator Amber Flame's first full-length poetry collection, Ordinary Cruelty, was published in 2017 through Write Bloody Press. A 2016 and 2017 Pushcart Prize nominee and Jack Straw Writer Program alum, Amber is a former church kid from the Southwest. Her work explores spirituality and sexuality, cross-woven with themes of grief and loss, motherhood and magic, and interstitial joy.

The Broad Stage's continued partnership with Los Angeles' own esteemed literary publisher Red Hen Press makes for an extraordinary season of poetry in mixed-media and experimental performance formats. This exploration of movement through music and poetry is brought to life through gorgeous operatic compositions, vocal fireworks and visceral original works.

During the COVID-19 pandemic, The Broad Stage and Red Hen Press teamed up for a season of virtual programming that brought together performing artists and poets to explore the themes central to works that were planned to be featured in The Broad Stage's 2020/21 Season. Red Hen Press Poetry Hour, as it was called, became original monthly programming via the online portal - The Broad Stage at Home - that broadcasted through December 2020.

Tickets are free for Members of The Broad Stage and start at $10 on a pay-what-you-wish scale for the general public. For more information, visit thebroadstage.org/poetrycrossroads.


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