Tennessee Williams Literary Festival Announces Today's Events

Tennessee Williams Literary Festival Announces Today's Events
Today's Events; Saturday, March 24
9 AM-4 PM at the Hotel Monteleone
Box Office, Orleans Room at the Hotel Monteleone

8 AM-Special Event
BOOKS & BEIGNETS TW/NOLF BOOK CLUB
Particularly in light of the 2016 documentary I Am Not Your Negro, author and civil rights activist James Baldwin is garnering new attention and appreciation for his astute analyses of race, class, and sexuality in U.S. culture. Our reading group will take up his groundbreaking semi-autobiographical first novel, Go Tell It on the Mountain (1953). Attendees are invited to read this seminal text that brought mid-20th Century African-American literature out of the shadow of Richard Wright while deftly exploring the post-Civil War Great Migration, its southern roots, its religious inflections, and its generational tensions. The suggested edition is the most recent paperback (ISBN 978-0345806543). Traditional New Orleans fare of coffee and beignets at Muriel's Jackson Square with lively discussion to follow led by Festival favorite and Southern literary scholar Gary Richards. Seating is limited to 50 persons; pre-registration is required.
Muriel's Jackson Square Restaurant, $25 or VIP Pass.

9 AM-Special Event
THE NEW ORLEANS WRITING MARATHON
Jumpstart your writing with the New Orleans Writing Marathon! Hosted by Marathon founder Richard Louth, participants write their way across the French Quarter in cafes, pubs, bookstores, and anywhere a small group of writers can sit, write, and share their work. It's all about writing in the moment, writing for the joy of it, and finding inspiration in one's place. Writers gather for a brief overview of the Writing Marathon process before setting out in small groups to write and enjoy the city's food, spirits, and atmosphere until noon or beyond. Participants write on anything they want in any form they wish-memoir, fiction, reflection, essay, poetry, or quick descriptive impressions-and share their writing with each other without criticism.

For more information, please visit: www.writingmarathon.com and for questions, contact Richard Louth at rlouth@selu.edu.

Writing Marathons will begin at 9 am Thursday, Saturday, and Sunday in the Hotel Monteleone, Queen Anne Ballroom. Free and open to the public.
Writing Marathon Readings: Participants in any of the three Writing Marathons are invited to read their writing at a celebration on Sunday, March 25, at 2:30 PM in the Hotel Monteleone, Gallier Room.
Free and open to the public.
Hotel Monteleone, Queen Anne Ballroom, FREE

10 AM-Literary Discussion
NEW ORLEANS: THE FIRST THREE HUNDRED YEARS-A Tricentennial Discussion
In this year of reflection and celebration, contributors to this commemorative volume talk about three centuries of fascinating history with volume editor Errol Laborde. Panelists and their topics include Patricia Brady, Women; Raphael Cassimere, Race; John Kemp, Art; and Ian McNulty, Dining.
Sponsored by Pelican Publishing Company.
Hotel Monteleone, Queen Anne Ballroom, $10 or Literary Discussion Pass, Combo Pass or VIP Pass.

10 AM-Literary Discussion
THE CHANGING LANDSCAPE OF CHILDHOOD
The accelerating pace of change-just consider the transition from page to screen-affects not only how our children read but what they read. Children's book authors Ashley Mace Havird, Madaline Herlong, and Farrah Penn, along with children's book editor Catherine Frank, all talk about new directions in young adult books, finding ways to empower children within their worlds. Cheryl McGoey Mathis, Regional Advisor for the Louisiana/Mississippi Chapter of the Society of Children's Book Writers & Illustrators, moderates.Sponsored by Kathy and Edmund Schrenk.
Muriel's Jackson Square Restaurant, $10 or Literary Discussion Pass, Combo Pass, or VIP Pass.

10 AM-Literary Discussion
A LIFE IN PUBLISHING: TALKING WITH PEGGY L. FOX
New Orleans intellectual property attorney Marie Breaux interviews Peggy L. Fox, Tennessee Williams' last editor, with a play at the printer when Williams died in 1983. Fox's many roles in publishing include working at New Directions from 1975 and retiring as President and Publisher in 2011. She edited Williams' poetry collection, Androgyne, Mon Amour, and the last plays published during his lifetime. After his death she initiated a program of publishing his unpublished works including Collected Stories, Stopped Rocking and Other Screenplays, Spring Storm, Not about Nightingales and two volumes of his Selected Letters. She also superintended new scholarly editions of William Carlos Williams' poetry as well as various titles by Ezra Pound, H. D. (Hilda Doolittle), Federico García Lorca, and Thomas Merton. Fox worked with Chinese dissident poet Bei Dao, the award-winning translator of ancient Chinese poetry; David Hinton; Lawrence Ferlinghetti, Rosmarie Waldrop, Robert Creeley, Gary Snyder, and Michael McClure; and novelists, both in English (William Herrick and John Hawkes) and in translation (Uwe Timm and Antonio Tabucchi). She is also a Trustee of the Thomas Merton Legacy Trust and the e. e. cummings Trust, both of which oversee new and reissued publications of these authors.
Williams Research Center, 410 Chartres Street, $10 or Literary Discussion Pass, Combo Pass or VIP Pass.

10 AM-Walking Tour
Tennessee Williams LITERARY WALKING TOUR CREATED BY DR. KENNETH HOLDITCH
New Orleans-and especially the French Quarter-played a vital role in shaping Tennessee Williams. When he came here for the first time, he was Tom Williams. When he left here a couple of months later, he was known as Tennessee, having undergone a tremendous change in his personal life and his creativity. A man perpetually on the move, Tennessee considered this city his "spiritual home" and had at least eight residences in its famous neighborhoods. Visit the homes and hangouts where he lived and worked and returned to throughout his adult life, beloved spots that helped to make Tennessee America's greatest playwright. Led by Heritage Tours and created by Dr. Kenneth Holditch, this was the first literary tour of the French Quarter.
Tours at 10 AM and 2 PM, THURSDAY THROUGH SUNDAY
Tour meets in the Hotel Monteleone Queen Anne Parlor, $25 or VIP Pass.

11 AM-Theater
HOW TO BUILD A CITY
Second Star New Orleans presents Big Easy winner Mary Pauley in How To Build a City by Jessie Strauss. Part of the fourth annual Two For Tennessee, the only recurring original play festival in the New Orleans area, inspired by the Tennessee Williams poem "The Soft City," How To Build A City is a darkly humorous one-woman show about Sasha, the person charged with watching over New Orleans for the past 300 years. The Tricentennial of New Orleans has arrived and Sasha is tasked with defending her work shaping New Orleans through the centuries as an unexpected guest arrives.
Le Petit Théâtre du Vieux Carré, 616 St. Peter Street, $20 or VIP Pass.

11 AM-Master Class
Richard Ford: WHAT MAKES A GOOD WRITER
Join Pulitzer Prize-winner Richard Ford for this Master Class where he presents thirteen items that make up good writing, all of which he deems important and valuable. He will go through each one, explicating what he means and why they are so vital, citing books and references and sources, all both serious and yet with much amusement. Not only will you get great advice, but you'll be able to ask your questions too!
Hotel Monteleone, Vieux Carré Room, $25 or VIP Pass.

11:30 AM-Literary Discussion
OH, HOW WE DANCE! NEW ORLEANS MOVES!
>From the elaborate choreography of debutante balls to police officers on the street doing an impromptu Wobble to Sean Payton's boogie in the Saints' locker room, dance is an important part of our culture. The authors of three new books examine the history and lively culture of dance in our city. Kim Vaz-Deville celebrates the history of the Baby Dolls, Jennifer Atkins recounts the complicated history of Carnival balls, and Karen Celestan and Eric Waterstransport us to the world of the second line. Moderated by cultural activist Greer Goff Mendy.
Hotel Monteleone, Queen Anne Ballroom, $10 or Literary Discussion Pass, Combo Pass or VIP Pass.

11:30 AM-Literary Discussion
MENDING FOR MEMORY: NEEDLE, THREAD, WORDS
Every city has its distinctive subcultures, and in New Orleans, seamstresses and sewers constitute a unique one, cutting across lines of race, class, and gender. In their landmark anthology Mending for Memory, Susan Tucker and Lee Meitzen Grue examine the way this art is woven into the city's culture, from early childhood to Mardi Gras Krewes and royalty and Indian costumes. Contributors Gina Ferrara and Malaika Favorite discuss their work.
Muriel's Jackson Square Restaurant, $10 or Literary Discussion Pass, Combo Pass or VIP Pass.

11:30 AM-Literary Discussion
"YOURS EVER, 10": THE CORRESPONDENCE OF Tennessee Williams
With the March 2018 publication of The Luck of Friendship: The Letters of Tennessee Williams and James Laughlin, there are five volumes of correspondence by the playwright in print. The editors of the new volume, Peggy L. Fox and Thomas Keith, will be joined by theater director and scholar Tom Mitchell to discuss the complex portrait of the playwright which emerges from the passion, substance, candor, insight, eloquence, and puckish wit in his letters. There is also much in this volume to be learned about both the private and professional life of the man who, as moderator Andrew Holleran has written, "could not write a graceless or unmemorable sentence."
Williams Research Center, 410 Chartres St., $10 or Literary Discussion Pass, Combo Pass or VIP Pass.

1 PM-Literary Discussion
NEVER BEHIND US: GOING TO THE PAST FOR GREAT FICTION
Four novelists with dazzling new books take us back in history for the roots of contemporary dilemmas. Nathaniel Rich draws on New Orleans in 1918 and the construction of the Industrial Canal for King Zeno, Tiffany Quay Tysonplumbs a complicated family legacy in The Past Is Never, Minrose Gwin goes back to Mississippi for Promise, and Margaret Wilkerson Sexton explores four decades of family life in New Orleans for A Kind of Freedom, nominated for a National Book Award. Moderated by novelist Bev Marshall. Sponsored by Backspace Bar & Kitchen.
Hotel Monteleone, Queen Anne Ballroom, $10 or Literary Discussion Pass, Combo Pass, or VIP Pass.

1 PM-Literary Discussion
PITCH PERFECT: GET YOUR STORY IDEA OUT THERE
So you're writing a book and you're ready to take your idea out for a spin? Make your two-minute pitch to an audience of fellow writers and a panel composed of experts, including Kathleen Calhoun Nettleton of Pelican Publishing, Radclyffe of Bold Strokes Books, Abram Himelstein of UNO Press, and Susan Larson of "The Reading Life" for their reactions. Come early to sign up for a spot and stick around to learn how to refine a pitch. Sponsored by Pelican Publishing Company.
Muriel's Jackson Square Restaurant, $10 or Literary Discussion Pass, Combo Pass or VIP Pass.

1 PM-Literary Discussion
Tennessee Williams IN THE 21ST CENTURY-RESPONSES, INTERPRETATIONS, PERSPECTIVES
What does the future hold for the plays of Tennessee Williams? While his plays continue to be performed and still resonate in the popular imagination, the longer his work remains part of our culture, the more it is and will be reconsidered, reimagined, and put under a theatrical microscope. This panel of distinguished theater makers, directors, and playwrights including Robert Bray,Augustin J Correro, Lisa D'Amour, and Maxwell Williams will contemplate how Williams's plays are now being, and will be, staged with respect to experimentation, adaptation, expectations, and diversity in casting, as well as the how the lesser-known and later work may affect the public's appreciation of his greatest plays. Moderated by Aimee Hayes.
Williams Research Center, 410 Chartres St., $10 or Literary Discussion Pass, Combo Pass or VIP Pass.

1:00 PM-Special Event
NASTY WOMEN POETS: UNAPOLOGETIC PERFORMANCES
This reading by contributors to Nasty Women Poets: An Unapologetic Anthology of Subversive Verse is by and about women defying limitations and lady-like expectations; women refusing to be "nice girls;" women being formidable and funny; women speaking to power and singing for the good of their souls; women being strong, sexy, strident, super-smart, and stupendous; and women encouraging little girls to keep dreaming. These poets speak not just to the current political climate and the man who is responsible for its title, but to the stereotypes and trials women have faced dating back to Eve, and to the long history of women resisting those limitations. Co-editor Julie Kane, former Louisiana state poet laureate, moderates the reading of 15 incredibly talented women writers and performers. Sponsored by Paige Royer and Kerry Clayton.
Hotel Monteleone, Vieux Carré Room, $10 or VIP Pass.

2 PM-Walking Tour
Tennessee Williams LITERARY WALKING TOUR CREATED BY DR. KENNETH HOLDITCH
New Orleans-and especially the French Quarter-played a vital role in shaping Tennessee Williams. When he came here for the first time, he was Tom Williams. When he left here a couple of months later, he was known as Tennessee, having undergone a tremendous change in his personal life and his creativity. A man perpetually on the move, Tennessee considered this city his "spiritual home" and had at least eight residences in its famous neighborhoods. Visit the homes and hangouts where he lived and worked and returned to throughout his adult life, beloved spots that helped to make Tennessee America's greatest playwright. Led by Heritage Tours and created by Dr. Kenneth Holditch, this was the first literary tour of the French Quarter.
Tours at 10 AM and 2 PM, THURSDAY THROUGH SUNDAY
Tour meets in the Hotel Monteleone Queen Anne Parlor, $25 or VIP Pass.

2:30-Theater
"DEAR Mr. Williams" FEATURING Bryan Batt
This one-man performance features Bryan Batt in a reading of a show-in-progress. It's a love letter to New Orleans mingled with passages from Tennessee's letters, essays, and stories about Nola. Batt (12 Years A Slave, Mad Men, Scream: The TV Series, and Jeffrey, among others) shares his love of the city and experienced a coming of age in New Orleans somehow influenced by Williams.
Le Petit Théâtre du Vieux Carré, 616 St. Peter Street. $20 or VIP Pass.

2:30 PM-Literary Discussion
ALL KINDS OF MEMOIR
The rage for memoir is still going strong, and of course! Memoirs provide a sense of human connection, let us feel we're not alone. And writers approach the form in a variety of ways. In her new book, Beth Ann Fennelly talks about micro-memoir, Anne Gisleson tells her story through the framework of the Existential Crisis Reading Group, and Rick Bragg and Minrose Gwin make art out of family stories. See how these writers master the art of self-revelation to take audiences along on a personal journey. Moderated by Constance Adler, the author of the memoir My Bayou, New Orleans Through the Eyes of a Lover.
Hotel Monteleone, Queen Anne Ballroom, $10 or Literary Discussion Pass, Combo Pass or VIP Pass.

2:30 PM-Literary Discussion
A TALK WITH TENNESSEE
The documentary A Conversation with Tennessee Williams in New Orleansincludes excerpts from longtime WWL-TV anchor Eric Paulsen's 1981 interview with the playwright. This documentary, produced by WYES-TV producer Peggy Scott Laborde, focuses on Williams' love of and experiences in the city, where he lived off and on from 1939 until his death in 1983. Laborde will interview Eric Paulsen concerning his memories of Williams following a presentation of the documentary.
Williams Research Center, 410 Chartres Street, $10 or Literary Discussion Pass, Combo Pass or VIP Pass.

4 PM-Literary Discussion
CHINESE PLACE AND IDENTITY IN THE AMERICAN SOUTH
>From the passage of the Chinese Exclusion Act in 1882 through the Civil Rights Era, Chinese immigrants have been at the center of the national debate over what makes an American. For generations, national immigration policy has shaped the lives of Chinese Americans. In this panel, the speakers will discuss how communities were shaped by restrictive immigration policies, examining migration patterns of Chinese in the American South from both a geographical and social perspective. Panelists include Adrienne Berard, Shaolu Yu, andWinston Ho. Moderated by David Johnson. Sponsored by the Confucius Institute at Xavier University of Louisiana.
Hotel Monteleone, Queen Anne Ballroom, $10 or Literary Discussion Pass, Combo Pass, or VIP Pass.

4 PM-Special Event
DONNA BRAZILE IN CONVERSATION WITH TYLER BRIDGES.
HOW DID WE GET HERE? WHEN POLITICS STOPS MAKING SENSE
Join us for a Saturday afternoon of political talk on stage at Le Petit Theatre! Popular political commentator (and New Orleans native) Donna Brazile dishes with investigative journalist Tyler Bridges about this era of unpredictability. Can we get back to Cooking with Grease?
Le Petit Théâtre du Vieux Carré, 616 St. Peter Street, $20 or VIP Pass.

6 PM-Special Event
LEAH CHASE: INTERVIEW WITH A National Treasure AND LIVING LEGEND
>From Civil Rights activists, entertainers, presidents and dignitaries, to Tennessee Williams himself, Leah Chase has fed their bellies and nourished their souls. Come listen to this beloved icon in conversation with journalist and television personality Sheba Turk, reflect on her life, business, and the people in her world, through the food that brought them all together in a tapestry of memories that covers almost a third of New Orleans history. In her own words, "Well, it's been up and down, as I tell people. Like Langston Hughes said, it sure ain't been no crystal staircase, but it's always fun. People come and they say, well, Leah, you fed this president . . . but presidents come and go. It's that everyday customer that comes and tell you--like . . . one lady said, 'I remember coming here when I was in high school.' So that is a good feeling for me, you know, that people remember me . . . I couldn't live, honey, without people."-Chef Leah Chase with Michel Martin on NPR's Tell Me More.
Hotel Monteleone, Queen Anne Ballroom, $10 or VIP Pass.

7:30 PM-Theater
A STREETCAR NAMED DESIRE BY Tennessee Williams
Directed by Maxwell Williams
The story of Blanche DuBois and her collision with her sensuous and brutal brother-in-law, Stanley Kowalski, is as dynamic and searing today as it was when it premiered in 1947. In conjunction with the 32nd annual TW/NOLF, Le Petit Theatre presents New Orleans' signature play-the Pulitzer Prize-winning masterwork by America's great poet-playwright, Tennessee Williams.
Thursday, Friday, and Saturday at 7:30 PM; and Sunday at 3 PM. Visit www.lepetittheatre.com or call 504.522.2081 for tickets.
Le Petit Théâtre du Vieux Carré, 616 St. Peter Street.

7:30 PM-Theater
Tennessee Williams DOUBLE BILL
Two rarely-seen works paired in a limited engagement, presented by Southern Rep Theatre in partnership with the Tennessee Williams/New Orleans Literary Festival.

AND TELL SAD STORIES OF THE DEATH OF QUEENS
Directed by Ricky Graham
This production showcases barely contained desires and passions that erupt during a fateful Mardi Gras holiday. Candy, a successful drag queen, picks up a rough sailor and spoils him with money and attention. When he leaves her suddenly, it's up to the two queens who live upstairs to offer consolation.

THE TWO CHARACTER PLAY
Directed by Austin Pendleton in association with Playhouse Creatures Theatre Company
A brother-and-sister team of touring actors is abandoned in an isolated theatre by their troupe to face an unknown audience. Williams' fugue of a play brilliantly intertwines fantasy and reality as the two enact an illusion within an illusion and come to face the darkest truths about themselves. Tennessee Williams called this his "most beautiful" play since A Streetcar Named Desire. Irene Glezos (Big Easy nomination for her turn as "Lady" in Orpheus Descending) returns to Southern Rep opposite Joseph W. Rodriguez.
Thursday, Friday, and Saturday at 7:30 PM; Sunday at 3 PM. For tickets, call 504-522-6545 or visit www.southernrep.com.
Loyola University, Marquette Theatre, 6363 St. Charles Avenue.

8 PM-Theater
ONE ARM
Directed by Augustin J Correro
One Arm is Moises Kaufman's adaptation of a screenplay by Tennessee Williams, based on his short story of the same title. A navy veteran and boxer who lost his arm in a car accident must resort to hustling on Canal Street to make his living. When a john pushes him too far, though, he finds himself on death row. He escapes into the correspondence of his past clients for spiritual salvation until his number is up. Produced by the Tennessee Williams Theatre Company of New Orleans in conjunction with the TW/NOLF.
Thursday, Friday, and Saturday at 8 PM; Sunday at 6 PM.
General Admission $25. Students/Seniors/Theater Professionals: $20.
Saturday, March 24: $40 includes a discussion with Moises Kaufman following the performance.
Visit www.tennesseewilliams.net or call 504-581-1144 for tickets.
Zeitgeist Multi-Disciplinary Arts Center, 1618 Oretha Castle Haley Boulevard.
8 PM-Theater

VIEUX CARRE BY Tennessee Williams
Directed by Dennis Monn
An aspiring writer (Christopher Weaver); a homosexual painter (Vinsantos Defonte); a doomed young woman (Emilie Whelan) and her Bourbon Street barker lover; two aging "ladies" living in poverty; and the eccentric irrepressible landlady are the lonely inhabitants of the boarding house at 722 Toulouse Street, where the real life Tennessee Williams stayed upon his arrival to New Orleans in 1938. Vieux Carre, considered one of Williams' most autobiographical, is a play of echoes and remembrances, a series of engrossing scenes, sometimes brutally candid, sometimes delicately poetic, woven together into a rich and revealing tapestry, glinting with theatricality and throbbing with the feel of life. This production features the live music of Sidney Bechet by Krewe of Bechet. Produced by the AllWays Lounge in partnership with the Tennessee Williams/New Orleans Literary Festival.
Thursday, Friday, and Saturday at 8 PM; and Sunday at 6 PM.
AllWays Lounge, 2240 St. Claude Avenue, $25 table seating or $20 general admission.



About the Tennessee Williams/New Orleans Literary Festival
The Tennessee Williams/New Orleans Literary Festival celebrates the genius of Tennessee Williams, who once called our city his "spiritual home," and the contemporary artists who are as honest and unflinching in their examination of the human condition as our patron playwright. Founded in 1986 by a group of cultural enthusiasts, the Festival has grown from a small gathering of 500 to a five-day literary and multi-cultural event, which sees 11,000+ seats filled each year. In late March, we toast Williams' birthday with theater, literary panels, food, and music events featuring luminaries and the brightest new talents in American arts. For more information, visit www.tennesseewilliams.net or find us on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.


The Tennessee Williams/New Orleans Literary Festival (TW/NOLF) is supported by a grant from the Louisiana Division of the Arts, Office of Cultural Development, Department of Culture, Recreation and Tourism, in cooperation with the Louisiana State Arts Council. Funding has also been provided by the National Endowment for the Arts, Art Works. Major backing comes from the New Orleans Theatre Association, which supports performing arts throughout the Greater New Orleans area, and the TW/NOLF is supported in part by an award from the National Endowment for the Arts for Literature.




Related Articles

New Orleans THEATER Stories | Shows


From This Author BWW News Desk

Before you go...

Like Us On Facebook
Follow Us On Twitter
Follow Us On Instagram