Jazz Poetry Month: Waclaw Zimpel (Poland) plus Featured PoetsFriday, September 22, 2017 @ 9 p.m.
Join us for an evening of international jazz with clarinetist Wacław Zimpel (Poland). Between sets, Wacław will also collaborate with exiled writer-in-residence Osama Alomar (Syria), Maung Day (Myanmar) from the University of Iowa’s International Writers Program and Cave Canem co-founder Toi Derricotte for a jazz and poetry interlude.
Classically trained clarinetist and composer, Wacław Zimpel is one of the key figures of the Polish and international scene of improvised music. His explorations have met with an unprecedented acclaim of mass audiences and the Paszport Polityki award in the ‘popular music’ category. In a continuous search for a new musical language, he draws heavily on various musical traditions, but his sound is undoubtedly contemporary. His most important projects include Wacław Zimpel solo, with the heavy use of analog electronics, LAM with Krzysztof Dys and Hubert Zemler, as well as Hindu-Polish Saagara. The winner of the Poznań Artistic Award and the Medal of Young Art awarded by the Głos Wielkopolski.
Born in Damascus, Syria in 1968 and now living in Chicago, Osama Alomar is one of the most well-respected Arabic poets writing today, and a prominent practitioner of the Arabic al-qisa al-qasira jiddan, the “very short story.” He is the author of Fullblood Arabian in English, and three collections of short stories and a volume of poetry in Arabic. Alomar’s first full-length collection of stories, The Teeth of the Comb, will be published by New Directions in April 2017. His short stories have been published by Newyorker.com, Noon, Conjunctions.com, The Coffin Factory, Electric Literature, and The Literary Review. He also performs as a musician. Osama Alomar travels with his translator, Christian Collins.
Maung Day (Myanmar) has published six poetry books in Burmese and one in English. His poetry has appeared in International Poetry Review, Guernica, The Wolf, The Awl and elsewhere. He translates widely between English and Burmese; his visual work and poetry are exhibited and curated internationally. He participates courtesy of the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs at the U.S. Department of State.
Toi Derricotte is the author of The Undertaker’s Daughter (University of Pittsburgh Press, 2011) and four earlier collections of poetry, including Tender, winner of the 1998 Paterson Poetry Prize. Her literary memoir, The Black Notebooks (W.W. Norton), received the 1998 Anisfield-Wolf Book Award for Non-Fiction and was a New York Times Notable Book of the Year. Her honors include, among many others, the 2012 Paterson Poetry Prize for Sustained Literary Achievement, the 2012 PEN/Voelcker Award for Poetry, the Lucille Medwick Memorial Award from the Poetry Society of America, two Pushcart Prizes and the Distinguished Pioneering of the Arts Award from the United Black Artists. Derricotte is the co-founder of Cave Canem Foundation (with Cornelius Eady), Professor Emerita at the University of Pittsburgh and a Chancellor of the Academy of American Poets.