Photostory: Mizna at the Lowertown Reading Jam

Fancy Mizna Instagram posted during the event. Follow mizna_arabart on Instagram.

Mizna brought a diverse group of established and emerging writers and performers to the Lowertown Reading Jam stage. With that Homeland Security dictum "if you see something, say something" ringing in their ears, Mizna’s group of Arab American and Muslim writers gave voice to their own experience of diverse homelands. The evening was hosted by performance artist and Mizna rep Moheb Soliman, who presented his own work along with the work of Robert Farid Karimi, Kathryn Haddad, Nimo Farah, Willie Nour, Niny Salem, Jna Shelomith, Sarah Thamer and percussionist Khaldoun Samman.

Feb 21st, 2011 Lowertown Reading Jam: Tou SaiKo Lee presents "Asiatic Fresh & Classic"

tou-saiko-lee

Event curator, Tou SaiKo Lee believes in building an influential movement within the Hmong community through the arts. He is a spoken word artist, mentor and hip hop activist. A mentor for youth at schools and community centers across the country, he speaks about issues that include human rights, diversity, racism, gang violence and arts for social change. Tou SaiKo Lee is the co-founder of “The H Project” a compilation music CD inspired by the human right violations of Hmong people in the jungles of Laos. Spoken word performers at the Feb 21st Lowertown Reading Jam include Ed Bok Lee, Juliana Pegues, Bao Phi, Saymoukda Vongsay, Kevin Yang, Chanmany Sysengchanh, David Vulocity, Chilli Lor, Laurine Chang and Gaoiaong Vang.

Dec 13th, 2010 Lowertown Reading Jam: Matthew Rucker presents “The Best Slam Poetry in the World”

Sam Cook

Hear the best in spoken word by members of the Saint Paul Soap Boxing Slam team — two time winners of the National Poetry Slam (“the Olympics of Slam Poetry”). The Saint Paul Almanac continues its year-round literary celebration of Minnesota’s capital city with the acclaimed Lowertown Reading Jams. The December presentation of the eclectic series, curated by Matthew Rucker, will be presented on Monday, December 13, 2010 from 7 to 8:30 p.m. at the Black Dog Café, 308 Prince Street in Saint Paul. The Jams will continue on the second Monday of each month through July 2011.

Nov 8th, 2010 Lowertown Reading Jam: Tish Jones presents "The Truth: Wants More"

LRJ-truth-wants-more

The Saint Paul Almanac continues its year-round literary celebration of Minnesota’s capital city with the acclaimed Lowertown Reading Jams. The second season of the eclectic series, curated by Tish Jones, will be presented on Monday, November 8, 2010 from 7 to 8:30 p.m. at the Black Dog Café, 308 Prince Street in Saint Paul. The Jams will continue on the second Monday of each month through July 2011.

July 5th, 2010: Melvin Giles presents "Nurturing the Soil of the Soul"

Melvin-Giles-LRJ

The Saint Paul Almanac presents an evening of "Nurturing the Soil of the Soul: Intentional Acts of Kindness and Peace Are the Seeds of Liberation and Peace," the season finale of the Saint Paul Almanac's Lowertown Reading Jam series. Hosted by Melvin Giles, the evening includes readings and expressions from the godmother of peace, Ms. Bertha Givins; KFAI radio show co-host Andy Driscoll of Truth to Tell; spoken word artist Tish Jones, executive and artistic director of TruArtSpeaks; Yer Kong of Paj Ntuab Voice; community activist and urban farmer, Metric Giles I; and performing artists of Saint Paul Central's Synergy.

June 7th, 2010 Lowertown Reading Jam: Tish Jones introduces the Minnesota Quest Youth Slam Team

vlcsnap-2010-08-18-20h32m40s138

The Saint Paul Almanac continues its year-round literary celebration of Minnesota's capital city with a provocative and inspiring spoken word performance by the Minnesota Quest Youth Slam Team. The Minnesota Quest Youth Slam Team is a talented group of multi-cultural poets, writers and performers from urban Minnesota high schools who give voice to an art form that honors and brings forward the stories, experiences, dreams, convictions and perspectives often silenced by the dominant culture.

May 3rd, 2010 Lowertown Reading Jam: "Celebrating Local Cultural Workers" with Deborah Torraine

vlcsnap-2010-10-07-00h38m40s239

Hosted by Deborah A. Torraine, the Lowertown Reading Jam takes place from 7 to 8:30 p.m. at the Black Dog Café, 308 Prince Street. Joining Torraine for a lively and inspiring event will be local writers, poets, storytellers, playwrights, a gospel singer and spoken word artists, including Louis Alemayehu, Lisa Brimmer, Claire DeCoster, Lenora Harris, Lynette Harris, Michael Haynes, Q and Leonard Wilkes.

April 5th, 2010 Lowertown Reading Jam: Desdemona presents "Poetry & Activism" with award-winning artists & poets

desdemona

The April 5th Lowertown Reading Jam, curated by internationally acclaimed artist, Desdamona, will also feature performances by Reggie Harris, Tish Jones and Ibé. The Almanac has been hosting the monthly Reading Jams since October 2009, and they have been steadily gaining in popularity as excited audiences spread the word about their powerful shared experiences. The Jams provide an opportunity to explore and bridge the cultural and social breadth of Saint Paul throughout the year as stories are both given and received.

Mar 1st, 2010 Lowertown Reading Jam: Saint Paul Poet Laureate Carol Connolly presents a Quintet of Irish Poets

quintet-of-irish-poets

In anticipation of St. Patrick's Day, five local Irish-American writers will be reading in a popular monthly event sponsored by The Saint Paul Almanac and curated this month by Saint Paul Poet Laureate, Carol Connolly. Presented Monday, March 1, 2010 at the Blackdog Coffee and Wine Bar in Lowertown, Connolly brings together a quintet of acclaimed Irish Poets to read from new and selected works. Joining Carol for the reading will be Kevin Fitzpatrick, Ethna McKiernan, Tim Nolan, and Mary Kay Rummel.