Writers and readers,
Half a decade after its founding, Lamprophonic has presented over 230 writers. These writers constitute a wide swath of this city's creative community: They are of ranging ages, races, ethnicities, sexualities, gender identities, and professions. They are — I believe — from all five boroughs and New Jersey. Some have pursued their MFAs, some have not. Sometimes Lamprophonic is the first opportunity a writer has to have their words heard by an audience. Sometimes our authors have national followings. To bring this diverse set together has been our aim.
Behind the scenes, ten artists have taken on the responsibility of curating events at one point or another, and together we have sought to make this community a little more inviting to all. There is still a lot of work to be done in this regard, but I'm immensely proud of what we've accomplished.
Five years in, this is not the end of Lamprophonic, but it is a reframing. We will no longer produce monthly events, but will attempt to marshal our resources more acutely — designing fewer, equally innovative events as it suits our priorities.
I feel both extremely confident in the choice I am making as the director of the organization — it's time — and deeply ambivalent as a citizen of this country who believes in free speech, equality, and the dignity of words. Words still mean something, but they mean something less than they did a year ago. Trust, I'll still be fighting for the space to be heard, if in a different way. I know that the reins of this work are in good hands.
I want thank you all for being a part of this effort. You didn't have to read at or attend our events, but you did, in greater numbers each year, and it energized our every move. On a personal level, I want to thank you for giving me a chance to host and direct our events; these are not things I ever saw myself doing, but I'm grateful that I did. Thank you for giving me the time of day.
As we wrap up and regroup, you may hear from us less, but do stay in touch. We want to keep promoting and presenting and celebrating, so please let us know of your good news and keep us liked or followed or whatever the kids are doing these days.
And speaking of celebration, I hope you'll join us at our Take A Bow reading on Friday, July 28th. At this event, the 2016-2017 Lampro curators will take to the mic to share a little bit of what they've been working on. Please come cheer them on.
In sum I'll say these final things:
I hope the community we created has been as welcoming as we envisioned. I hope together we'll continue to expand those margins until everyone feels they have a space to be heard. From the bottom of my heart, thank you for being a part of this. Don't be a stranger.
Until next time, be well and happy writing.