November 15, 2013

For Immediate Release:
Lydia Viscardi
or Robbin Zella: (203) 332-5052

In His Words

The Housatonic Museum of Art (HMA) presents In His Words, an all-male poetry showcase, free and open to the public on December 5th, 2013 from 6:30 – 10:00pm, 900 Lafayette Blvd., Bridgeport, CT. In His Words, inspired by the all-female poetry showcase, The Women Gather, is an opportunity to highlight men who use poetry as a medium to express their views on love, relationships, fatherhood, society, body image, self-esteem, and many other topics. This group of highly respected poets includes Buddha LuvJonz, Phenix, Frederick-Douglass Knowles II and Jamaal St John, artists who have performed and been celebrated on the poetry scene for numerous years. In His Words takes away the assumptions about beliefs and provides truth as learned from the experiences of these men. This event will inspire discussions about manhood and broaden our perspective on the male experience today. There will be time to network with each artist at the end of our program. Bring love, light and an open mind to this experience. Contact Shanna Melton, HMA Ambassador of Poetry, and for information on the poetry showcase and Lydia Viscardi for information about HMA.

Jamaal St John, a poet/spoken word artist who has spent fifteen years honing his lyrical style of old school hip-hop rhyme schemes and cunning wordplay, accentuated with relevant social, political, cultural and economic topics, performing on various stages and colleges throughout The United States and Canada. Highlights of his illustrious career include a five time Nuyorican Poets Café Grand Slam Finalist, the Nuyorican Slam King in 2000 and Grand Slam Champion in 2008, Captain of the Poetic Battles Slam Team at the World Famous Apollo Theatre in Harlem, NY, New Jersey Grand Slam Finalist in Montclair, New Jersey, six time winner of The Toronto International Poetry Slam, and two time winner of The Yale Peabody Slam and The James Marshall Slam. St John taped for Russell Simmons’ Def Jam Poets. He is the author of a chapbook of poetry entitled “The Horror & The Hype” and has three spoken word albums to his credit: “Enterlightenment,” “Won't Catch Me Runnin',” and “Southpaw Stance.” He is currently working on a book of quotations, a new chapbook of poems, and a brand new spoken word album.

Frederick-Douglass Knowles II is a Poet, Professor, and Activist involved in community education, AIDS activism and the performing arts. He has competed on the 2001 and 2005 National Poetry Slam Teams and served as the 2011, 2012 and 2013 Connecticut Slam Team coach. His works have been featured in Poems on the Road to Peace: A Collective Tribute to Dr. King Volume 2. Peabody Museum of Natural History by Yale University Press, The East Haddam Stage Company of Connecticut, The 13th Annual Acacia Group Conference at California State University, Folio –a Southern Connecticut State University literary magazine, Lefoko –a Botswana, Southern Africa Hip-Hop magazine, Fingernails Across the Chalkboard: Poetry and Prose on HIV/AIDS from the Black Diaspora by Third World Press and his first collection of poetry, "Black Rose City," by Author House. Frederick-Douglass Knowles II is currently an Assistant Professor of English at Three Rivers Community College in Black Rose City, where he teaches Composition and Literature.

Phenix, also known as Jason Hall is a theater major at Housatonic Community College. He has appeared in many productions at HCC such as; “Spunk,” “Freak,” “Grandmas Alley,” and Rebirth's production “Timeline.” Phenix is the author of Rebirth Arts Collective’s play, “Letters from the Sky.” He is a spoken word artist, performing at various venues throughout the tri-state area and has recorded a spoken word album entitled “Yahweh’s Paintbrush” released through Xoul Musik Productions. Jason is also a radio show host and creator of Wpmr online radio show “Xoul Power.”

Buddha LuvJonz, also known as Adrian Sayaphet is an Asian-American/ Laotian poet, DJ, and actor born and raised in Bridgeport, CT. He exudes an abundance of great energy through self-expression. Poetry gives him the ability to share his cultural and life experiences of being Asian in America; a dose of yellow soul to help diversify closed-minds. His art defines who he is - an individual searching to make a difference through words, music, and life.