We are happy to announce our fall lineup of events, featuring the Academy of American Poets Conversations in partnership with Housing Works. These conversations will pair some of today’s most intriguing poets with accomplished artists, composers, and performers.

“We’re thrilled to be collaborating with our friends at Housing Works on our conversation series that celebrates today’s poets and other leading artists, demonstrating poetry’s impact and relevancy,” said Academy of American Poets Executive Director Jennifer Benka.

Series Schedule:

Conversation series events will take place in the Housing Works Bookstore Café, located at 126 Crosby St, New York, NY 10012. Events are free and open to the public.

September 23, 7-8 p.m.

Robin Coste Lewis and Sam Durant

Robin Coste Lewis is the author of Voyage of the Sable Venus (Alfred A. Knopf, 2015), which has been described as “a meditation on the cultural depiction of the black female figure. Juxtaposing autobiography with art-historical constructs of racial identity, she defines and creates self.” Lewis has taught at Wheaton College, Hunter College, and Hampshire College. She currently serves as a Provost’s Fellow at the University of Southern California and lives in Los Angeles.

Sam Durant is a multimedia artist whose works engage a variety of social, political, and cultural issues. Often referencing American history, his work explores the varying relationships between culture and politics, engaging subjects as diverse as the civil rights movement, southern rock music, and modernism. Durant’s work has been widely exhibited internationally and in the United States and can be found in many public collections including the Tate Modern in London, Project Row Houses in Houston, and the Museum of Modern Art in New York City. He teaches art at the California Institute of the Arts in Valencia, California.

October 17, 7-8 p.m.

Anne Waldman and Meredith Monk

Anne Waldman is the author of over forty books of poetry, most recently Voice’s Daughter of a Heart Yet To Be Born (Coffee House Press, 2016). Her numerous honors include the American Book Awards’ Lifetime Achievement Award, the Dylan Thomas Memorial Award, and the Shelley Memorial Award. Waldman is a Chancellor of the Academy of American Poets and is the director of the MFA Writing and Poetics program at the Naropa Institute. She divides her time between Boulder, Colorado, and New York City.

Meredith Monk is a Grammy-nominated composer, singer, director/choreographer and creator of new opera, music-theater works, films, and installations. Recognized as one of the most unique and influential artists of our time, Monk’s work has been presented by BAM, Lincoln Center Festival, and London’s Barbican Centre, among other major venues around the world. Her many honors include a MacArthur “Genius” Grant, three Obie Awards, and two Bessie Awards for Sustained Creative Achievement. In 2014, Monk also received the National Medal of Arts from President Obama.

November 14, 7-8 p.m.

Yusef Komunyakaa and Cécile McLorin Salvant

Yusef Komunyakaa is the author of numerous collections of poetry, most recently The Emperor of Water Clocks (Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2015). His honors include fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts, the Kingsley Tufts Poetry Award, and the Wallace Stevens Award. Komunyakaa is a former Chancellor of the Academy of American Poets and is currently Distinguished Senior Poet in New York University’s graduate creative writing program. He lives in New York City.

Cécile McLorin Salvant has been described by The New York Times as “the finest jazz singer to emerge in the last decade.” In 2009, after a series of concerts in Paris, she recorded her first album “Cécile,” with Jean-François Bonnel’s Paris Quintet. A year later, she won the Thelonious Monk competition in Washington D.C. In 2014, her second album, “Woman Child” was nominated for a Grammy. Her third album, “For One To Love,” won the Grammy Award for Best Jazz Vocal Album in 2016.

Press Contacts:

Academy of American Poets: Advertising & Marketing Coordinator, Michelle Campagna | [email protected]

Housing Works: Public Relations Manager, Katherine Oakes | [email protected]

And don’t miss our other exciting programming this fall:

Wednesday, October 19, 7 p.m.

A memorial tribute to award-winning poet and our Chancellor C. D. Wright, Proshansky Auditorium, CUNY Graduate Center.

Thursday - Saturday, October 20 - 22.

Poets Forum at the Dodge Poetry Festival, New Jersey Performing Arts Center.

Sunday, October 23, 6 p.m.

Page Meets Stage with Evie Shockley and Yesenia Montilla, Bowery Poetry Club.

Thursday, November 3, 6:30 p.m.

The Blaney Lecture presented by Pulitzer Prize-winning poet Sharon Olds, Theresa Lang Center, The New School.

About the Academy of American Poets

The Academy of American Poets is the largest membership-based nonprofit organization fostering an appreciation for contemporary poetry and supporting American poets. The organization produces Poets.org, the world’s largest publicly-funded website for poets and poetry; National Poetry Month; the popular Poem-a-Day series; American Poets magazine; resources for K-12 educators; and an annual series of poetry readings and special events. In addition, since its founding in 1934, the Academy has awarded more money to poets than any other organization through its American Poets Prizes.

About Housing Works

Housing Works is a healing community of people living with and affected by HIV/AIDS. The mission of the organization is to end the dual crises of homelessness and AIDS through relentless advocacy, the provision of lifesaving services, and entrepreneurial businesses that sustain our efforts.

The Housing Works Bookstore Cafe has established itself as a New York downtown institution and tourist destination for the last decade. The one-of-a-kind bookstore, which features a full calendar of special events and a fully stocked café, is staffed almost entirely by volunteers and 100% of the store’s profits go to support Housing Works.