Literary Festival offers weekend of free readings
By Kevin O’Connor
Brattleboro boasts a long association with books, from Rudyard Kipling writing “The Jungle Book” here in the 1890s to the first U.S. edition of Harry Potter rolling off local presses a century later.
But ask today’s locals for the town’s biggest publishing event and they’ll point you to this weekend’s Brattleboro Literary Festival.
The 11th annual showcase will bring 45 authors to the hub of southeastern Vermont for a series of free programs today through Sunday.
The festival opens today at 7 p.m. with a staged reading of the 2012 Vermont Reads novella “Bull Run,” a video exhibit of writer and artist collaborations, and a poetry slam judged by Harvard Review poetry editor Major Jackson.
The festival continues Friday, Saturday and Sunday with appearances by novelists, nonfiction writers and poets ranging from David Aguilar, an astronomer published by National Geographic, to Todd Zuniga, co-creator of Literary Death Match — a self-described mashup of Def Poetry Jam performance and American Idol judging.
More specifics about the following schedule is available on the website brattleboroliteraryfestival.org (all events are on Brattleboro’s Main Street unless otherwise noted):
7 p.m.: New England Youth Theatre staged reading of Paul Fleischman’s 2012 Vermont Reads novella “Bull Run,” Brooks Memorial Library / Center for Digital Art and Write Action collaborations, Center for Digital Art, 74 Cotton Mill Hill / Poetry slam featuring University of Vermont professor Major Jackson, Landmark College Student Center Room, Putney.
5:30 p.m.: Opening reception for New England limited-edition letterpress broadside exhibit, Catherine Dianich Gallery.
7 p.m.: Memoirist Deni Béchard and novelist Tayari Jones, First Baptist Church.
8:30 p.m.: Literary Death Match, Robert H. Gibson River Garden.
For the complete schedule of weekend events, see Thursday's Rutland Herald.