The largest poetry festival in North America comes to Newark on October 18th
Published October 10, 2018 | Brick City Live
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On October 18th, the largest poetry festival in North America will once again unfold in Newark.
The Geraldine R. Dodge Poetry festival will hold its 17th biennial four-day event at NJPAC and other locations in the Newark Arts District downtown. A slew of bestselling authors, Pulitzer Prize winners, slam poetry champions and other poetry luminaries will participate in readings, forums and performances during the festival, including “featured readings” from the likes of former U.S. Poet Laureate Juan Felipe Herrera, Pulitzer Prize-winners Sharon Olds and Gregory Pardlo, award-winning poets Ntozake Shange and Alberto Ríos and others.
More than 150 poetry events will unfold during the four-day span of the festival, which the New York Times once dubbed “Wordstock.” This is the fifth consecutive time the Dodge Poetry Festival has been held in Newark. It debuted in 1986 at Waterloo Village, part of a state park in northern New Jersey. This year’s Dodge Poetry Festival also marks the second time the Academy of American Poets will integrate its annual Poets Forum into the festival, bringing together their Board of Chancellors for readings and conversations.
As in previous years, the festival will partner with environmental advocacy group Clean Water Action to make the event a zero-waste event—meaning materials used, and disposed of, in event planning are compostable, recyclable or reusable. Festival organizers have also partnered with New Jersey Transit to encourage festival goers to take public transportation through discounted transportation passes.
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Afternoon Poetry Sampler with back-to-back short readings by Jan Beatty, Jericho Brown, Tina Chang, Sandra Cisneros, Henri Cole, Kwame Dawes, Juan Felipe Herrera, David Hinton, Eileen Myles, Aimee Nezhukumatathil, Sharon Olds, Gregory Orr, Gregory Pardlo, Mary Ruefle, Sapphire, Rachel Wiley, David Young and more.
Evening Academy of American Poets Chancellors’ Reading, part of the organization’s annual Poets Forum, with Elizabeth Alexander (President Obama’s first inaugural poet), Ellen Bass, Marilyn Chin, Kwame Dawes, Forrest Gander, Linda Gregerson, Brenda Hillman, Marie Howe, Khaled Mattawa, Marilyn Nelson, Alicia Ostriker, Alberto Ríos and David St. John.
Friday, October 19:
Krista Tippett records an afternoon interview with poet Jericho Brown for later broadcast on “On Being,” her popular, Peabody Award-winning public radio program and podcast.
Evening Main Stage Readings by Jan Beatty, Henri Cole, Kwame Dawes, Gregory Pardlo and Sapphire.
Saturday, October 20:
“The Beloved: A Poem and Song Cycle” in the afternoon featuring Gregory Orr and musicians/vocalists Parkington Sisters. The world premiere of a collaborative piece conceived and composed for the 2018 Festival.
Krista Tippett interviews Gregory Orr for “On Being” as well as afternoon Main Stage Readings by Sandra Cisneros, Mary Ruefle and David Young.
“In Praise: A Hundred Ways to Kneel and Kiss the Earth,”a music and poetry performance invitation to share gratitude across race, gender, belief system, age, and sexual preference, with Jan Beatty, Jericho Brown, Sandra Cisneros, Henri Cole, Kwame Dawes, Ross Gay, Rigoberto González, Juan Felipe Herrera, David Hinton, Joy Ladin, Joseph O. Legaspi, Eileen Myles, Aimee Nezhukumatathil, Sharon Olds, Rachel Wiley and the Newark Boys Chorus.
Sunday, October 21:
An afternoon Special Event: In Conversation with Ntozake Shange.
Krista Tippett interviewing Pulitzer Prize-winning poet Sharon Olds for “On Being.”
Main Stage Readings by Juan Felipe Herrera, Eileen Myles, Sharon Olds and Ntozake Shange.
The full Festival poet lineup, the complete 2018 Dodge Poetry Festival program, and other events leading up to the Festival will be posted on the Dodge Poetry Program website, www.DodgePoetry.org.