Upcoming Events & Performances
Get Whit! It’s time for Whitmania! A constellation of arts and humanities events celebrating the radical optimism of Walt Whitman, America’s first bard of democracy. Created, directed, and produced by Amber West in honor of Whitman’s bicentennial and UCLA’s centennial in 2019. For more information on FREE events to be held throughout the spring and fall of 2019, visit www.whitmania.ucla.edu
Recent Performances and Egg Up! National Book Tour Events
Egg Up! poetry reading featuring Amber West, Kelly Terwilliger, and Jennifer Perrine, Rose City Book Pub, Portland, OR, Friday, April 19, 2019, 730pm
National Poetry Month reading featuring Amber West, Linfield College, McMinnville, OR, Tuesday, April 16, 2019 at 7pm
National Poetry Month writing workshop: “Songs of Ourselves,” Eagle Point Library, Eagle Point, OR, Saturday, April 13, 2019, 2pm
National Poetry Month lecture: “Celebrating the Radical Optimism of Walt Whitman, Father of American Poetry,” Eagle Point Library, Eagle Point, OR, Thursday, April 11, 2019, 4pm
Visiting Poet for National Poetry Month, Eagle Point High School, Eagle Point, OR, Tuesday-Wednesday, April 9-10, 2019
Graduate Alumni Poetry Reading featuring Meghan Maguire Dahn, Sean Frederick Forbes, Matt Salyer, and Amber West, UCONN Bookstore, Storrs, CT, Thursday, February 7, 2019, 6pm
Invited Presenter: “Blackface Minstrelsy in American Puppetry,” part of a panel entitled Minstrel Performance and the History of the African American Puppet featuring Bart Roccoberton, Amber West, Benjamin Fisler, and Paulette Richards; Living Objects: African American Puppetry Festival and Symposium, UCONN Ballard Institute & Museum of Puppetry, Storrs, CT, Friday, February 8, 2019, 2:15pm
First Fridays: Rapp Saloon Reading Series, featuring Amber West, Luivette Resto, Curtis Hayes, LaLa DeVille, and Jonny Cifuentes, Rapp Saloon, 1436 2nd Street, Santa Monica, CA, Friday, November 2, 8:30pm
Featured Poet, Sunset Village Open Mic, University of California, Los Angeles, Monday, May 14, 6pm
Hen & God Hometown Book Launch Party, an evening of poetry, puppetry, live music, and revelry featuring Amber West, Zeb West, Will Jones, Clovis Blackwell, Jerime Ford, and The Singer & The Songwriter, The Palm Theatre, San Luis Obispo, CA, Friday, December 15, 7pm. Press release here.
Featured Poet, Language of the Soul: 34th Annual San Luis Obispo Poetry Festival, Linnaea's Cafe, San Luis Obispo, CA, Sunday, November 19, 7pm
Featured Poet, with Jules Nyquist, Jules' Poetry Playhouse, Albuquerque, NM, Sunday, October 14, 6pm
Featured Poet, Fleur de Boom! Editions One-Year Anniversary Party and Open Studio, Fleur de Boom! Studios, Pasadena, CA, Saturday, August 12, 7pm
Puppets & Poet, an eclectic evening of poetry and puppetry for mature audiences featuring Amber West, Dana Samborski, Jamie Moore, and more, Centennial Black Box Theater, Nashville, TN, Friday, June 30, 8pm
Egg Up! Hen & God NYC Book Launch Party, an evening of poetry, puppetry, song, and revelry featuring Amber West, Modesto Jimenez, Brian Carey Chung, Kirsten Day Kammermeyer, Kirsten Benjamin, Sam Silbiger, Faithlynn Morris, and Megan Murtha's Healing Choir: Erica David, Zoë Geltman, Claire Moodey, Megan Murtha, Ashley Nease, Elisa Nikoloulias, and Emma Wiseman. Hell Phone, Brooklyn, NY, Friday, June 23, 8pm
Bryant Park Poetry Series, with Alicia Ostriker, Marilyn Hacker, and Grace Schulman, NYC, Tuesday, June 20, 7pm
Selected Past Performances & Productions
The Word Works Authors! with Annik Adey-Babinski, Nathalie Anderson, Jessica Cuello, David Eye, Anne Pelletier, Roger Sedarat, Fritz Ward, and Mary Sherman Willis, 50th annual Association of Writers & Writing Programs (AWP) conference,Walls of Books, Washington, D.C., February 2017
The Word Works Strikes Again! Hostelling International, Washington, DC, February 2017
At The Inkwell Spring Poetry Series, KGB Bar, NYC, March 2016
Creator, Artistic Director, Playwright, Producer. Puppets & Poets, a hybrid arts festival with performances and educational programs for youth, family, and mature audiences, presented by Alphabet Arts at Brooklyn Arts Exchange and The Bushwick Starr, NYC, annually 2011-15.
Featured Poet. Brooklyn Gypsies presents Ghetto Hors D’oeuvres, collaborative performances by poets and rappers addressing gentrification, presented at The Bushwick Starr and JACK, NYC, annually 2013-15.
Playwright, Director, Performer. Fable of the Flying Fox, a puppet poem by Alphabet Arts featured in Great Small Works’ 10th International Toy Theater Festival, St. Ann’s Warehouse, NYC, June 2013.
Participating Poet. Walt Whitman “Song of Myself” Marathon, Brooklyn Bridge Park, NYC, 2011-13.
Playwright, Producer. Puppets Got Talent, an interactive talent competition with rotating puppet contestants presented by Alphabet Arts in various indoor and outdoor NYC venues, 2010-12.
Featured Poet, Creator, Curator. Toy Poets Theater, a collection of puppet poems performed by Alphabet Arts and special guests at Great Small Works’ 9th International Toy Theater Festival, St. Ann’s Warehouse, NYC, June 2010.
Playwright, Producer. City of Hamburgers, a puppet play adapted from The Simpsons’ Mike Reiss’ children’s book presented by Alphabet Arts in a variety of indoor and outdoor venues in NYC and CT, 2009-Present.
Featured Poet with headliner Matthea Harvey. Chin Music Reading Series, Pacific Standard, NYC, November 2008.
Guest Poet Laureate. Poem In Your Pocket Day, Mark Twain IS 239, Brooklyn, NY, April 2008.
Headlining Poet, Magnet Theater’s Under the Influence Series, NYC, May 2007. Performed with an improvisational comedy troupe who (re)acted to my poems.
Commissioned Playwright. Two Minute Tales, Bay Area Children's Theatre, San Francisco, CA, 2005. Created a comedic verse play adaptation of Hans Christian Andersen’s “The Princess & the Pea” for an original family production that toured throughout northern California.
Commissioned Poet. “Still Life With Blackberries.” California State University, Northridge, May 2005. Original poem set to music by Dorothy Caimano in classical composition for soprano and piano.
Dramaturge. Blood Wedding by Federico Garcia Lorca, directed by Mina Morita, produced by Breaking Ground Collective. Live Oak Theater, Berkeley, CA, 2004.
Playwright. Taping Ducks, a one-act feminist farce about the exercise industry, women, and aging created through improvisational rehearsals with a collaborative of female actors and puppeteers. Presented in the Body Shop Festival, Brava Theater, San Francisco, CA, April 2004.
Featured Poet with headliner Steve Kowit, Language of the Soul, 16th Annual San Luis Obispo Poetry Festival, November 1999.