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  • Writer's pictureKristina Andersson Bicher

Taking the Conversation Home: A Reading at McNally Jackson

From left standing (clockwise): Keila Vall de la Ville, Chris Hansen-Nelson, Ana Portnoy Brimmer, Emily Raboteau, Shakthi Shrima, Joan Silber and Kristina Andersson Bicher

How great it was to spend the afternoon reading with these Volcanistas!

I met the amazing Ana when we studied together three years ago with Mexican poet Francisco Segovia. Then last year, Chris and Shakthi were in my workshop with the one-and-only none Mark Doty. Keila is a writer/alum who's now helping out with our events in NYC. These are all dear and beautiful souls, fierce writers, and, I'm privileged to say, friends. This is what a writing community like Under the Volcano can do.

The acclaimed Joan Silber, who will join UTV as faculty in Jan. 2020, generously came out as our headliner. And Emily Raboteau, who was in the very first UTV class in 2003 and read beautifully at our Cornelia Street fundraiser with Paul Muldoon, joined as well.

I started as a program participant and now serve on the board. UTV is a very special program and Tepoztlán is a remarkable little village.

Our founder and exec director Magda Bogin created TAKING THE CONVERSATION HOME as a platform for encouraging UTV participants to play an active role as cultural ambassadors once they leave Tepoztlán. By organizing and hosting events like readings and dialogues in their home communities, our alumni share new work and can engage larger audiences in conversations on the challenges and values that unite us in these early years of the 21st century.

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