Wide Open Mic

Free and Open to the Public

Whether you have a polished piece or a rough work-in-progress, come and share your writing with a supportive community of writers. We begin with a featured reader and then open the mic to all. 7 pm First Wednesdays.

Coming Up:

February 5: Rich Forster
March 4: Jennifer Maloney
April 1: Paula Marchese
May 6: Doug Curry

February 5 featured reader: Rich Forster

Rich Forster has lived in the Rochester area and started writing just over 30 years ago, exclusively poetry for much of that time. As an alumni of The Taos (New Mexico) Poetry Circus’s Poetics and Performance Camps, this led to opportunities as a group facilitator, conference panelist, and featured reader.

Having spent years seriously dedicated to the craft, he’s finally come across a Rumi quote summarizing his goal… “Let yourself become living poetry,” and, in his own words, “A walking poem” who writes less but writes better (in his opinion). He found early on that the process of writing itself was his learning style. Born and raised as a latch-key kid and by the elements of an island in Alaska, he’s considered Alaskan Native from his mother’s side, and German from his father’s, both who he feels lucky to have been led by.

March 4 featured reader: Jennifer Maloney

Jennifer Maloney has lived in Rochester since 1985. She writes from a place of addiction and recovery; bone-deep knowledge of poverty; the wilds of mental illness; and with gratitude for the love she has received and given. Her work has been published in several anthologies and online literary journals, including Aaduna.org, Memoryhouse Magazine, The Pangolin Review, the Poets Speak…While We Still Can, Missing Persons: Reflections on Alzheimer’s Disease, and ImageOutWrite. Jennifer is the founder and curator of Just Poets.

April 1 featured reader: Paula Marchese

Paula Marchese studied Theatre at the University of Michigan. She was a member of the Ensemble Studio Theatre and has acted on stage and screen, co-starring in numerous television shows, including “Newhart,” “Falcon Crest,” and “General Hospital”. She also has produced educational films for McGraw-Hill and worked at NBC as a Story Analyst. Locally, Paula has worked at the Bristol Valley Theatre, Jewish Community Center, and Blackfriars Theater; and taught at SUNY Brockport. She is the co-author of “Depression: the Musical.” Her play, “The Ring,” was selected for the Geva Regional Playwrights Festival. She serves as Dramaturge for Hamm & Clov Stage Company.

May 6 featured reader: Doug Curry

Doug Curry was born and raised in Harlem, NY, where his love for music was nurtured. He came to Rochester via Pittsburgh as a graduate student at the University of Rochester. The recipient of WXXI’s Gold Microphone in 2016, he has hosted blues radio shows since 1975 and the “Blacks and Blues” show on WRUR-FM since 1982. Doug also participates in poetry readings, theater productions and has written for About … Time Magazine.