Dec
7
7:30 PM19:30

Ntozake Shange | Wild Beauty: New and Selected Poems

Ntozake Shange in conversation with Yolanda Wisher. “Extraordinary and wonderful” (New York Times), Ntozake Shange wrote the Broadway-staged Obie Award-winning for colored girls who have considered suicide/when the rainbow is enuf, the groundbreaking prose poem/theater piece hybrid that since 1975 has helped reveal what it is to be of color and female in America. The recipient of a Guggenheim Foundation fellowship and a Pushcart Prize, she is also the author of many works of fiction, including her debut novel Sassafras, Cypress & Indigo and story of Liliane. In Wild Beauty, Shange presents more than 60 original and previously collected poems in English and Spanish as a call to action for a new generation of activists. FREE. 

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Jan
18
6:30 PM18:30

Yolanda Wisher's Rent Party @ the Rosenbach

The tradition of the rent party dates back to the Harlem Renaissance, when communal gatherings of artists and musicians fed the outpouring of blues, jazz, and poetry for which this period is known. Hosted by poet Yolanda Wisher, this quarterly series celebrates the literary past with readings by contemporary poets and music performed by her band, the Afroeaters (Jim Dragoni on guitar, Sirlance Gamble on drums, and Mark Palacio on double bass). 

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Feb
5
6:30 PM18:30

Monday Night Poets

  • Parkway Central Library, Room 108, 1st Floor (map)
  • Google Calendar ICS

Yolanda Wisher reads with Lamont Dixon. The Free Library is pleased to present The Monday Poets on the first Monday of every month, October through April. Now in its 22nd year, the Monday Poets Reading Series showcases a variety of talented local and regional poets. Copies of the featured poets books may be available for cash purchase after the reading. Time permitting, at the end there may be a short open-mic session. For additional information, please call the Free Library of Philadelphia's Literature Department at 215-686-5402.

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Feb
14
7:00 PM19:00

hokkuchi

  • Rutgers University-Camden College of Arts and Sciences (map)
  • Google Calendar ICS

Poet Yolanda Wisher & double bassist Mark Palacio present "hokkuchi," a meeting of haiku & eros inspired by Sonia Sanchez’s most pulse-stirring & blush-worthy work. Performing original haiku sequences set to blues changes, Wisher & Palacio explore the intimate connection between form & feeling.

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Apr
10
6:30 PM18:30

Yolanda Wisher's Rent Party @ the Rosenbach

The tradition of the rent party dates back to the Harlem Renaissance, when communal gatherings of artists and musicians fed the outpouring of blues, jazz, and poetry for which this period is known. Hosted by poet Yolanda Wisher, this quarterly series celebrates the literary past with readings by contemporary poets and music performed by her band, the Afroeaters. 

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Nov
18
9:30 AM09:30

Tuning the Muse Workshop

  • Rosemont College - Lawrence Auditorium (map)
  • Google Calendar ICS

This workshop led by Yolanda Wisher will warm up your poetic vocal cords on the page through drawing, free-writing, and mind-mapping. Students will be led through a series of introspective and generative writing exercises inspired by poets Toi Derricotte, Yusef Komunyakaa, Audre Lorde, and Tim Seibles. You’ll leave with plenty of raw material for new poems and other creative projects. FREE.

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Nov
5
7:00 PM19:00

Pirate Jenny's Conspiracy

  • Ibrahim Theater @ International House Philadelphia (map)
  • Google Calendar ICS

Pirate Jenny, the vengeful heroine dreamed up in Kurt Weill’s Threepenny Opera, sails into the 21st century as a modern-day poet and blueswoman. Yolanda Wisher, Philadelphia’s Poet Laureate, imagines this retelling, inspired by Nina Simone’s powerful 1964 cover of the iconic song. Musing on black love and rage, civil rights, and the meaning of womanhood, Wisher’s tour-de-force performance travels the continents of spoken word and song, with first-mate and double bassist Mark Palacio at her side.

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Nov
1
5:30 PM17:30

Nothin But Nina: A Pirate Jenny Prelude

Join Philadelphia Poet Laureate Yolanda Wisher at The Sable Collective for a shindig of sisterly affection & a preview of her Intercultural Journeys show, Pirate Jenny's Conspiracy on Sunday, November 5th. Poetry, shopping, and nothin' but Nina Simone on the playlist. Small bites and swashbuckling cocktail by PplFood. New work in conversation with the show presented by visual artist Karina Puente.

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Oct
21
10:00 AM10:00

Emerging Arts Leaders: Philadelphia 5th Annual Creative Conversation

  • PHS: Pennsylvania Horticultural Society (map)
  • Google Calendar ICS

Explore the intersection of art, civic, political and educational initiatives in Philadelphia and engage with established and emerging leaders at this year’s Creative Conversation focused on COLLECTIVE ACTION. Our keynote speaker, Yolanda Wisher, is Philadelphia's current Poet Laureate. Wisher will discuss the poetry of cross-sector collaborations between artists and organizations in Philadelphia. $30 public | $20 members.

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Oct
20
8:00 PM20:00

Day of the Poet 20th Anniversary

“Day of the Poet,” Philly’s pioneering festival of Spoken Word, which headlined monthly at the Bride for nine seasons, returns to celebrate the vision, talent, and insurgent spirit that fostered a movement and forged an epoch. This historic event will reunite seminal DOTP alumni whose artistic contributions to contemporary culture have become storied. Presenting: Trapeta Mayson, Twin Poets, DJ Razor Ramon, Ursula Rucker, Yolanda Wisher, and festival founder, curator, and Spoken Word legend Kevin O’Neill. Special guests from NYC and SCI Graterford, et al, will be announced. The event will also include an open mic lottery.

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Oct
20
7:00 PM19:00

I Will Hold You in the Light

Mural Arts and the Friends of Independence National Historical Park invite you to consider a contemporary “Pursuit of Happiness” in the birthplace of American Democracy. Developed by artists Dave & Ilyssa Kyu of Campfire Stories with middle and high school classrooms of the Art Education program, “I Will Hold you in the Light” invites visitors to see, to acknowledge, and to hold in love, diverse performers as they share contemporary and historic interpretations on “The Pursuit of Happiness.” Performers include Yolanda Wisher (Philadelphia Poet Laureate), young brass band musicians from Play On Philly, and Michael Pace, who will representing the Delaware Tribe of Indians. FREE

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Oct
18
6:30 PM18:30

Amplifying Our Voices: Empowerment Through Poetry & Community

Join Women In Transition (WIT) for an evening of poetry to heal, share your stories and to speak out about violence, trauma, healing, empowerment, and joy. Readings by Yolanda Wisher – Poet Laureate of Philadelphia. Husnaa Hashim – Youth Poet Laureate of Philadelphia. Trapeta Mayson – Host & Poet. Perry “Vision” DiVirgilio – Poet, Actor & Philadelphia Youth Poetry Movement (PYPM) Artistic Director. Courtney Bambrick – Poet, Educator & Poetry Editor of Philadelphia Stories Magazine. Open mic to follow. Sign ups available at the door. Suggested donation* $5-10, online or cash at the door. No one will be turned away for lack of funds! All proceeds will go to support Women In Transition, a 501c3 nonprofit agency that provides free and confidential services to women experiencing domestic violence and/or substance abuse.

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Sep
29
7:15 PM19:15

Final Fridays: Word Up!

Workshops and performances through the galleries, celebrating the art of words and language. Finale in the Great Stair Hall by Yolanda Wisher & The Afroeaters, featuring Jim Dragoni on guitar, Marcy Francis & Jan Jeffries on percussion, Carol Moog on harmonica, and Mark Palacio on double bass.

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Sep
28
6:30 PM18:30

Yolanda Wisher's Rent Party @ the Rosenbach

  • The Rosenbach Museum & Library (map)
  • Google Calendar ICS

The tradition of the rent party dates back to the Harlem Renaissance, when communal gatherings of artists and musicians fed the outpouring of blues, jazz, and poetry for which this period is known. Hosted by poet Yolanda Wisher, this quarterly series celebrates the literary past with readings by contemporary poets and music performed by her band, the Afroeaters (Jim Dragoni on guitar, Sirlance Gamble on drums, and Mark Palacio on double bass). 

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Sep
27
6:00 PM18:00

Monument to the Philadelphia Poet

  • Shakespeare Memorial Park at the Free Library of Philadelphia (map)
  • Google Calendar ICS

A monumental project deserves a monumental performance, and Philadelphia’s poetry scene does not disappoint. Local writers Yolanda Wisher, Lillian Dunn, and Nicole Steinberg, and more have selected a host of Philadelphia-based poets for this one-night-only monument in verse, part of Monument Lab, a public art and history project produced by Mural Arts Philadelphia. The project, taking place over nine weeks between September 16 and November 19, invites people to join a citywide conversation about history, memory, and our collective future.

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Sep
22
7:00 PM19:00

The Art Room Salon

Hailing from Germantown via Ambler, North Wales, Brooklyn, and Belize, the husband-wife duo of double bassist Mark Palacio and poet laureate Yolanda Wisher has been marrying art and activism in Philadelphia since 1999. Palacio and Wisher will share stories and images from their past projects and perform original songs and poems. $5. Limited seating; RSVP required: Call 215-834-4140.

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Sep
14
7:00 PM19:00

A Friend of a Friend Sent Me

  • St. Stephen's Episcopal Church (map)
  • Google Calendar ICS

Philadelphia Poet Laureate Yolanda Wisher, guest poets and Jefferson student poets read works in response to the Asano Humanities & Health Series theme, Safety. Featuring Wisher, Irène Mathieu, Trapeta B. Mayson, Kirwyn Sutherland, and F. Omar Telan.

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Sep
5
6:00 PM18:00

From Maple Street Rag: An Improvisational Reading

Philadelphia Poet Laureate Yolanda Wisher presents an improvisational reading from Maple Street Rag, a work-in-progress. Wisher will read poems, share images, perform songs, and invite members of the audience to take part in a Q&A following the show. Featuring Jim Dragoni (guitar), Sirlance Gamble (drums) & Mark Palacio (double bass). 

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