Among major players in the local literary-arts scene, Seattle Arts & Lectures has long played a pivotal role. Since 1988, the popular and respected organization has hosted world-class authors in readings, Q&A sessions, and lectures, branching out over the years into multiple series, education programs, and more. These days SAL stages events for a Literary/Arts Series, Poetry Series, and special SAL Presents evenings, covering considerable ground while continuing to attract an impressive list of literary figures. And, beginning with the 2015-16 season, many of these events now commence with a Bushwick Book Club Seattle song.
After the positive response from Bushwick performances at a one-off engagement with Cheryl Strayed at Benaroya Hall last March (the day following the Bushwick Wild show), SAL arranged to add musical components to nearly half of the current season’s shows.
“We are so excited to be partnering with The Bushwick Book Club Seattle this year!” says Rebecca Hoogs, SAL’s Associate Director; “We made it a priority to make our events more lively, more fun, more interactive, and Bushwick has helped us do just that.”
So far Ben Mish, MoZo, Amanda Sue Winterhalter, Beth Whitney, and Tai Shan have all composed original songs (or, in some cases, put selections of an author’s poetry to original music) for bestselling writer Elizabeth Gilbert and poets Mary Szybist, Robert Wrigley, Linda Pastan, and Srikanth Reddy.
Alice Howe, Read & Destroy, yours truly, and a few more musicians TBA will round out the spring season with diverse events featuring authors Emily St. John Mandel, Jacqueline Woodson, Teju Cole, and more.
Bushwick performers “have brought an amazing energy to our events that make them feel like a truly special night out,” remarks Hoogs, “and our authors and poets have appreciated hearing their written work interpreted for song. Art from art: it’s a beautiful cycle that has spiraled out to our audiences to make our events even more resonant.”
Here’s to keeping Seattle reading, singing, and celebrating itself.
UPCOMING SAL/BUSHWICK EVENTS:
SAL Literary/Arts Series: Pulitzer Prize-winner Geraldine Brooks
with Bushwick artists: Amanda Sue Winterhalter & Reggie Garrett
Thursday, January 28 – 7:30pm
Susan Brotman Auditorium at McCaw Hall
with Bushwick artists: Read & Destroy
Thursday, March 10 – 6:00pm
SAL Literary/Arts Series: National Book Award finalist Emily St. John Mandel
with Bushwick artist: Wes Weddell
Wednesday, March 23 – 7:30pm
Town Hall Seattle
SAL Presents:Jacqueline Woodson
with Bushwick artist: Alice Howe
Tuesday, April 12- 7:30pm
Town Hall Seattle