Between January 23-31, 2016, more than 100 communities across the U.S. gathered to share stories about the state of our union and uploaded them to an online Story Portal. Their stories inspired a diverse group of poets to create The Poetic Address to the Nation, a poem for the page and the stage, performed live in Philadelphia and livestreamed by PhillyCAM in conjunction with FreeSpeechTV.
This video begins with the Poetic Preamble hosted by Montgomery County Poet Laureate David Escobar-Martin and featuring emerging poets Shaneka Briggs, Kassidi Jones, Julian Randall, and Sabrina Slipchenko. Hosted by Yolanda Wisher, USDAC Chief Rhapsodist of Wherewithal, and newly named Poet Laureate of Philadelphia, the body of the Poetic Address begins at the 16:42 minute mark, and features sonnets about the state of our union composed by Wisher, Cathy Linh Che, Thomas Devaney, LaTasha Natasha Diggs, Denice Frohman, Ross Gay, Bob Holman, Margaret Randall, Luis Rodriguez, J.C. Todd, and Tanaya Winder. The Address also includes performances by local Philly luminaries Bethlehem & Sad Patrick, Trapeta Mayson, Jena Osman, Frank Sherlock, Monnette Sudler, and Kirwyn Sutherland.
LIVE IN PHILLY: “The Poetic Address to the Nation” took place at the Painted Bride Art Center, 230 Vine Street, Philadelphia, PA 19106.
HOST A VIEWING PARTY: Here's a one-pager with ideas for how to do so!
DOWNLOAD THE POETIC ADDRESS: (follow along, or perform with others!) Download here.
EVENT PROGRAM: Bios and more info about the performance & performers available here.
FACEBOOK Event Link: https://www.facebook.com/events/211835245831726/
And make sure you're on the USDAC mailing list to get the most up to date information: www.usdac.us/enlist.