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Literary Arts

Fodor receives first Chautauqua Play Commission

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From now until July 31, Chautauqua Theater Company will be busy with the 2011 New Play Workshop Festival. In addition to the three new plays in this year’s NPW Festival, CTC, in conjunction with the Writers’ Center, is commissioning a play for the first time. The recipient of the Chautauqua Play Commission is playwright Kate Fodor. While Fodor is the first recipient of the Commission, this is not her first time in Chautauqua. Fodor already has brought two of her plays to CTC to be workshopped in NPW Festivals in the past.

Poet laureate Dove to speak on forgotten prodigy

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On a morning in May of 1803, Ludwig van Beethoven sat behind his piano on the stage of Augarten Theatre in Vienna and premiered his now-famous Violin Sonata No. 9 in A major, Op. 47. Reading the score over his shoulder was George Augustus Polgreen Bridgetower, the up-and-coming, biracial, African-Polish prodigy. The sonata had just been finished the night before, and there was no time for a rehearsal. The violinist took a chance at improvising, mimicking a difficult piano run, and Beethoven beamed. “Once more, my dear fellow!” he jumped up and shouted, and the two played the movement again.

Poet-in-residence praises the Psalms

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Psalms is the book in the Bible containing 150 chapters of verse. Some sing to praise God and give thanks, while others lament misfortune and ask for guidance. Jacqueline Osherow said she sees the Psalms as some of the most beautiful poetry ever written.

Week Four Writers-in-residence to bridge gaps in writing, culture

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The Writers’ Center this week welcomes Jacqueline Osherow and Janice Eidus, two writers who will lead workshops into the cross-currents of culture and the center of writing. Both writers will read selections from their work at 3:30 p.m. Sunday at the Literary Arts Center at Alumni Hall and later in the week as part of the Chautauqua Jewish Writers’ Festival.

Larson’s book traces rise of Nazi Germany

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Martha Dodd was a young, beautiful American living in Berlin in 1933. The daughter of the U.S. Ambassador, she cavorted in elite circles of German society and fell in love with top Nazi officials. Not until the first spasm of Hitler’s vicious executions did she turn against her suitors and become a Soviet spy.

Week Three selection to foster poetry appreciation

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“I am the Pablo bird, bird of a single feather, I fly in the clear shadows and the confused light.” These are the words of Nobel Prize-winning Chilean poet Pablo Neruda. A writer with a strong political opinion, Neruda was originally Neftalí Reyes but changed his name to save his father the embarrassment of having a poet for a son.

Writers-in-residence foster new poets, voices

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This week, the Writers’ Center will launch a new batch of poets and help prose writers fine-tune their voices. To kick off their week-long stay at Chautauqua, poet-in-residence Aimee Nezhukumatathil and writer-in-residence Ron MacLean will both read selections from their work at 3:30 p.m. Sunday on the front porch of Alumni Hall.
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