Spring 2001




INSOMNIACATHON, over 82 Hours of Non-stop Music and Poetry in Louisville, Kentucky, presented over 100 poets and more than 80 bands were featured in Insomniacathon 2001, a non-stop, 82-hour event that took place Feb. 22-25 in Louisville, KY. The event theme, "Art Makes a Difference," encompassed theater, independent films, puppeteers, a small-press fair and much more. Insomniacathon 2001, produced by the literary renaissance, included panel discussions, a poetry slam with a cash prize and an auction of over 100 signed rare books, first editions, broadsides, letters and first-proof manuscripts. The events were held in multiple venues: Brycchouse, Twice Told Coffee House, St. Francis High School, Cumberland Brews, Hideaway Saloon and the Rudyard Kipling. Artists performing in Insomniacathon 2001 are internationally recognized as well as regionally. Featured musical guests included world-famous David Amram, composer of over 100 musical works, Serpent Wisdom, Diana Darby, Tyrone Cotton, Blowup in Japanese and many more. Steve Dalachinsky, Ed McClanahan, Frank X Walker, Ron Seitz, George Wallace and Ed Sanders were among the many talented featured writers. Available works in the auction included a personally inscribed copy of Howl, by Allen Ginsberg, a Merry prankster video by Ken Kesey and pieces from Ed Sanders, Bono and Jim Carroll. This was the tenth Insomniacathon produced by the literary renaissance proving that "Art Makes A Difference," both to the individual and more importantly, to the larger community: city, state and world. The event proceeds benefited the Franciscan Shelter House.



Celebration and reading of Jack Kerouac's novel Big Sur

July 22 2001 San Francisco, Lowell, Orlando and Huntington sites for day-long event. Produced in conjunction with The Northport Historical Society, North Beach Chamber of Commerce, Huntington Chamber of Commerce, Long Island Poetry Collective, Lowell Celebrates Kerouac Festival, Kerouac Wrter in Residence Program, and Birnham Wood Graphics An unprecedented four city marathon reading of Jack Kerouac's novel Big Sur is set for July 22, 2001. The marathon reading, which will include appearances by celebrities, musicians, writers and Kerouac enthusiasts, will be held over an 8-10 hour period in San Francisco (Washington Square Park), Huntington New York (Northport Historical Society and Heckscher Park), Lowell Mass (Kerouac Monument and Park) and Orlando Florida (Chapters Books and the Kerouac Writers in Residence House) on July 22, 2001, from approximately 12-8 p.m. local time. The event is timed to mark the anniversary of the day that Jack Kerouac got on a train in Northport NY and traveled to California, where he stayed for several weeks in a cabin in the Big Sur and among friends in San Francisco. This experience formed the foundation for his masterful book Big Sur, written in a two week period in Florida after his return from the trip. Many critics consider Big Sur an important and valuable work by the beat author because of its harrowing and honest confrontation with mortality, and its ultimately transcendant message. In addition to being a compelling piece of writing, the novel demonstrates that Kerouac retained, well into the 1960s, an ample creative talent despite what some critics call his personal decline. Big Sur is a mature and honest work by the beat author written years after his youthful on the road experiences, retaining some of the exceptional linguistic pyrotechnics and psycho-social insight that marks the career of this major figure in 20th century American Literature. The event is an outgrowth of the July-September 2000 museum exhibition Kerouac in Northport, which was a revealing and unprecedented exploration of the author's life and times from 1958-1964 while he was living in that community, mounted by George Wallace for the Northport Historical Society. This event was the subject of articles in Newsday, Daily News, New York Times, Long Island Forum and local newspapers; the subject of radio shows in New York City and on World Underground Radio; and was the basis for a half hour television documentary by Metro Channel which aired for six months throughout the tri-state area. In its entirety, the day's events will feature musical performance, including an appearance by such figures as Kerouac contemporary David Amram, an internationally acclaimed composer and jazz musician, in concert in New York; Carolyn Cassady, a central figure in the early Beat scene and figure fictionalized in Big Sur; Kyr Dullea, star of the movie 2001: A Space Odyssey; and other appearances by notable figures. The event will be video-documented in all four locations for future airing and arrangements are currently being made for possible on-line streaming of the event. In San Francisco the beat poet and video documentary artist Kush has agreed to film events. In San Francisco, the event is contemplated as a possible kick-off to an annual Beat literature reading. In sum, it is anticipated that the day's events will re-emphasize the significance of Lowell, San Francisco, Northport and Orlando in the life of Jack Kerouac, increasingly recognized as a major figure in American literature - as well as reacquaint the public with this lesser known but particularly compelling work of art.



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