Photo Credit: Bruce Newman/NY Times
Virginia native Ekoko Omadeke runs the monthly Southern Writers Reading Series at Happy Ending
in NYC. I ask the one question that matters most:
WHY a Southern Writers series in NYC?
I decided to a Southern Writer’s Reading Series for several reasons. The main reason I decided to do the SWRS is because I feel the south is often misunderstood and misrepresented to those who are not from the region. To many people, the south is simply the McCain voting bible belt, states of the former Confederacy and the root of racism in America. However, the south is just as diverse, culturally, ethnically, politically, and artistically as New York. A reading series is a great way to demonstrate excellent people, writers and artists can come from the south.
Another reason I decided to the series is in response to the numerous barbecue and jazz joints throughout the city. I’ve been living in NY since August and learned early on, people in NY seem enchanted with the South However, many of the owners of “southern” restaurants and establishments are not from the south. One restaurant in particular served catfish with a mustard aioli. I feel as someone born and raised in Virginia, I am in a better position to accurately represent the region socially, culturally, and artistically.
Omadeke works with graduate students in the area to cull the best of the best for the monthly series.
February 11th’s readers are:
Dave Grumblatt, a Kentucky native and fiction MFA candidate at NYU and
The two featured Southern authors are followed by an open mike (sign up begins at 7:30PM). “Bring poetry or fiction to share and a mind ready to experience the mythic South without ever leaving Manhattan.”
After Feb 11, upcoming dates include March 11, April 8, June 10 and July 8.
Happy Ending Lounge @ 8PM – FREE
302 Broome Street (Forsyth/Eldridge)
Subway: B/D to Grand Street, or J/M/Z to Bowery