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An inter-generational poetry event with UAlbany professor Leonard Slade and performer D. Colin

Presentation and Q&A — 6 p.m. Friday, March 23. Husted Hall on the University at Albany downtown campus, 135 Western Avenue, Albany.

Leonard Slade and performer D. ColinAlbany, NY - An inter-generational poetry event with UAlbany professor Leonard Slade and performer D. Colin will be held 6 p.m. Friday, March 23 at Husted Hall on the University at Albany downtown campus, 135 Western Avenue, Albany.

Following their presentations, a screening of the youth slam poetry documentary LOUDER THAN A BOMB will be held at 8 p.m. in Page Hall, also on the downtown campus.

Slade and Colin have graciously agreed to fill in for poet Patricia Smith, whose appearance has been rescheduled. Free and open to the public, the programs are cosponsored by UAlbany’s English Graduate Student Organization, Graduate Student Association, English Department, and the New York State Writers Institute.

Leonard A. Slade Jr. will present his new collection of poems, I, Too, Am America, just published last week—March 15, 2008. The book is a personal meditation on Black history and the many people, both well-known and unknown, who have helped to create this nation.

In advance praise, major American poet Nikki Giovanni called it, “Clever! A well-executed book of poems.”

In a 2015 Times Union article, Writers Institute Director Paul Grondahl wrote, "Slade grew up on a 75-acre family farm in Conway, N.C., the oldest of nine children. Everyone pitched in to grow peanuts, cotton and corn. As a boy, he plowed behind their mule, Molly. His parents, Elizabeth and Leonard Slade Sr., sent all nine children to college…. He attended Elizabeth City State University in North Carolina and a defining moment for him was hearing the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. preach in 1961."

Slade is Professor of Africana Studies, Adjunct Professor of English, Collins Fellow, and Citizen Academic Laureate at the University at Albany (SUNY). He is the Past Director of the Humanistic Studies Doctoral Program and the Master of Arts in Liberal Studies Program. The author of 24 books, including 19 books of poetry, he is the recipient of The Poetry Gold Medal of Excellence and The Editor’s Choice Award from Poetryfest in Oregon, and the Poet of the Year Award from The Institute for Advanced Poetic Studies. In 2015, the Southern Conference of African American Studies, publishers of the journal, The Griot, named its national poetry prize in his honor.

D. Colin is a writer, performer, visual artist, and educator living in Troy. She is founder of the founder of the Poetic Vibe open mic at Troy Kitchen and currently completing her thesis for a Masters in English from the University at Albany. She the author of Dreaming in Kreyol, a collection of poems and prose paying homage to her Haitian heritage and history. She is currently working on her second collection, Window Seat & Chalklines.

She has been a featured poet performing at venues throughout the country in more than 10 states, including the renowned Nuyorican Poet’s Café, Boston’s Museum of Fine Art and internationally in Toronto, Glasgow, and London. In 2012, she competed at the National Poetry Slam with the first poetry slam team from Albany, the Nitty Gritty Slam team. In 2016 and 2017, she won a spot to compete at the Women of the World Poetry Slam (Brooklyn and Dallas) and is currently ranked 35 out of 96 women from around the country and internationally.

The documentary LOUDER THAN A BOMB, (United States, 2010, 99 minutes, color), directed by Greg Jacobs and Jon Siskel, tells the story of four Chicago high school poetry teams as they prepare for and compete in the world’s largest youth slam. Roger Ebert named it one of the ten best documentaries of the year and Stan Hall in The Oregonian wrote, "Only those possessing hearts of stone will remain unmoved by the raw adolescent emotion, passion and verbal jousting that make Greg Jacobs and Jon Siskel's documentary so poignant and enjoyable."