Off the Page: A Workshop for Honing Skills for Poetry Performance with poet Martin Steingesser
May 5, 2021 @ 3:30 pm – 5:00 pm EDT
Wednesdays, April 21, May 5, May 19, and June 2 from 3:30 to 5 pm (ET), On Zoom
Did you know that the word for “Ear” & “Wisdom” are the same in Sumerian!
In this “Off the Page” workshop, we will work toward a sense of pure awareness and natural embodiment when speaking our own or others’ poetry, story, or dramatic work. Sessions will focus on exploring, discussing, and practicing skills in a traditional sense and in the spirit of learning by heart. We’ll shift attention from mental knowing to attentive devotion for the receptive gift of spontaneous speech, moving from head to heart. Emphasis may be on poetry or prose, according to participant preference. For practical reasons, there will be a limit to one page of either poetry or prose for practice and presenting during the workshops.
Martin Steingesser is the author of three books of poems, Yellow Horses, Brothers of Morning, and The Thinking Heart: the Life & Loves of Etty Hillesum, an earlier version of the performance one, Etty’s Song, based on Hillesum’s journal and letters. Etty’s Song has toured in Maine, New Hampshire, and Vermont; and in Europe, in Poland, and at the International Etty Hillesum Congress in Belgium. “A burning, tender voice,” said former Maine Poet Laureate Baron Wormser. He served as Portland, Maine’s inaugural Poet Laureate, 2007-09. As a performance poet, he has given presentations for diverse audiences, from the Poetry and Jazz Festival in Portsmouth, New Hampshire, to the State House at the Maine Capitol. He has been teaching poetry workshops in Maine and New England for 40 years and was given the Maine Alliance for Arts Education’s 2006 Bill Bonyun Award “for exemplified talent and professionalism as an artist and contributions to arts education” and awarded a University of Southern Maine Stonecoast Pierre Menard Poetry Scholarship in 2000. “Writing and presenting poems is a way I touch and make present a sense of grace I want in my life,” he says. “There are moments I love in poems I have made—when they are given, when windows, doors, walls blow off, and I am in a warm, boundless space with whoever is listening.” For a preview of his most recent book: e.issuu.com/embed.html#9201165/41933626 .
Cost: $108; $90 members