Thursday, February 24, 2011

MISSOURI HISTORY NIGHT with Jim Muench and Arthur Merhoff

Hearing Voices presents a Missouri history theme night at 7 p.m. March 1 at Orr Street Studios in Columbia, Mo. 

Jim Muench will read from his manuscript The Teutonic Cross, a historical novel set in a Missouri college town in 1913, and Arthur Mehrhoff will read from Coming Home Again: A Missouri Journal, a nonfiction book about the meaning of Missouri's special places.


Jim Muench is an author, free-lance journalist, public relations consultant and college instructor who lives in Columbia. His history book, Five Stars:  Missouri’s Most Famous Generals, was published in 2006 by the University of Missouri Press. 

His career includes 25 years of professional experience writing in various genres, and his work has been published in newspapers, magazines and literary publications on local, regional and national levels in publications such as Missouri Life, Sports Illustrated for Kids and the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. His award-winning play, The Eye of the Sun, received staged readings at two Missouri colleges.

After earning a bachelor’s degree in English/creative writing from Westminster College and a master’s degree in journalism from the University of Missouri, he served as science writer for the MU News Bureau and then as director of communications at Westminster College, the Missouri Division of Energy and the Missouri Department of Economic Development. He started a freelance writing and public relations consulting business in 2001 and has been teaching English at Columbia College and Westminster College since 2007.

W. Arthur Mehrhoff is the academic coordinator for the Museum of Art & Archaeology at the University of Missouri. He holds a master’s degree in urban affairs from Washington University in St. Louis and a doctorate in American Studies, with an emphasis in material culture studies, from St. Louis University. For 15 years he served as community relations coordinator and chair of the award-winning Minnesota Design Team, and he received a Distinguished Service Award from the Minnesota chapter of the American Institute of Architects.
He was a keynote speaker for the June 2003 National Trust for Historic Preservation “Your Town” workshop in West Virginia, the 2007 Minnesota Rural Summit and the 2008 Canadian Institute of Planning conference.

Mehrhoff created the Heritage Preservation Program and taught community design and heritage preservation for 15 years at the Minnesota State University in Saint Cloud. He served as a guest lecturer in American culture studies at Washington University and teaches an online course on community design for University of Missouri Architectural Studies. His article on cultural tourism is featured in the Encyclopedia of Urban America: Cities and Suburbs (ABC-Clio, 1998), and in 2008 he received a certificate of merit for cultural writing from the International Regional Magazine Association.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Cave Canem Reading at Mizzou

As part of the University of Missouri's Black History Month celebration, award-winning poet Cornelius Eady, MU professor of English and founder of the black poets organization Cave Canem, reads his work with special guest Cave Canem poets Natasha Ria El-Scari, Aisha Sharif and Glenn North. Two finalists from the MU student open-mic spoken word competition also will perform.

The reading begins at 7 p.m. in Stotler Lounge III, Memorial Union, on the University of Missouri campus.

Cornelius Eady is a poet, playwright and songwriter. He is a professor of English and the Miller Family Chair at the University of Missouri. His poetry collections include Hardheaded Weather (Marian Wood/Putnam, 2008) and Brutal Imagination (Marian Wood/Putnam 2001), which was a finalist for the 2002 National Book Awards. With the poet Toi Derricotte, he is co-founder of the Cave Canem Foundation.

Glenn North is currently a poet in the MFA program at the University of Missouri-Kansas City. He is a Cave Canem fellow, a Callaloo creative writing fellow and a recent recipient of the Charlotte Street Generative Performing Artist award. Glenn provided the poetic narration for the award-winning film short May This Be Love and had a guest appearance on the popular ABC family drama Lincoln Heights. He is also the Poet-in-Residence of the American Jazz Museum, where he facilitates poetry writing and performance workshops and hosts the popular monthly open-mic poetry competition Jazz Poetry Jams. 

Aisha Sharif received her MFA in poetry from Indiana University in Bloomington. Much of her poetry and nonfiction explores how religious and gender identities intersect. Her poetry has appeared in Muslim Wakeup!, Touchstone Literary JournalPoemmemoirstory, Callaloo and Mythium. She is a proud Cave Canem fellow and teaches English at Park University and Johnson County Community College. She currently lives in Merriam, Kansas.

Natasha Ria El-Scari is a spoken-word artist and writer, a member of the Black Poets Collective of Kansas City, a Cave Canem fellow and a poetry workshop facilitator. Her writing has been published in Black Magnolias, I Woke Up and Put My Crown On: The Project of 76 Voices, Family Pictures and Check the Rhyme: An Anthology of Female Emcees and Poets. She has has performed at numerous Kansas City area venues and at universities throughout the United States. She holds a master’s degree in liberal studies from the University of Missouri-Kansas City.