Aurora Performance Group, Tara Betts, Cheryl Lynn Bruce, Nora Brooks Blakely, Andrea Change, Kevin Coval, Marcus Dunlevy, Natasha Estevez, Aricka Foreman, Christian Funches, Amina Gautier, Traci Hall, Angela Jackson, Runako Jahi, Peter Kahn, Quraysh Lansana, Haki Madhubuti, Nate Marshall, C. Russell Price, Michael Puican, Sketch N’Tyme, Patricia Smith, Mario Smith, Val Gray Ward
BrooksDay is a celebration of Gwendolyn Brooks that takes place on the anniversary of her birth, June 7th. Each year you can join us for BrooksDay, celebrating the works of Gwendolyn Brooks on her birthday! Each year we honor her legacy as an artist and an iconic figure of generosity and civic conscience in Chicago and in the nation. And 2017 will be all the more spectacular with the City of Chicago and its myriad arts organizations celebrating Brooks during the 2017 centennial. BrooksDay is the marquee event for these celebrations –an evening of Gwendolyn Brooks on her 100th birthday.
Along with youth, other poets, actors and teachers, many notable literary, cultural, civic, and political leaders from Chicago and beyond have taken the stage at the for BrookDay each uniquely celebrating and honoring Gwendolyn Brooks, who was the first African American writer to win the Pulitzer Prize. Since 2013 BrooksDay has been a marquee marathon event that has lead to a city-wide Brooks celebration in 2017. Each of our annual events have been unique unto themselves, all commemorating Gwendolyn Brooks’s artistic achievement, her legendary generosity toward other poets, her influence as a pathbreaking cultural figure in Chicago and the nation, and her deserved stature as the iconic poet of modern Chicago. In 2016 we outdid ourselves, featuring Kevin Coval, Aviya Kushner, and Andrea Change, as emcees, along with many of Chicago’s top literary and artistic talent including graffiti artist Tyrue Slang Jones, artistic brother-trio Sketch N’ Tyme wit LTAB 2016 winners, Rebirth. Readers include Michelle Boone, Steve Young, Jackie Taylor, Calvin Forbes, Coya Paz, Eric May, Angela Jackson, Toni Asante Lightfoot, Quraysh Ali Lansana, and many others. Putting together a robust day of poetry, performance, activism, and Gwendolyn Brooks, we are expecting a great and participatory audience for this event, as we were again centrally located in Chicago’s Loop at the Chicago Cultural Center.
2017 will prove to be even more impressive event, culminating with a BrooksDay@Nite celebration, performance and reception, capping what will be an incredible year of events celebrating Gwendolyn Brooks. Please check back with us for updates.