A People’s History of Chicago: What the City Sounds Like

The Chicago Public Library Foundation Junior Board invites you to join us for an evening of storytelling and poetry. Artist, educator, and community builder Kevin Coval performs work from A People’s History of Chicago, his collection of 77 poems honoring the human experience across 77 Chicago neighborhoods. Poets Patricia Frazier, E’mon Lauren, and Jalen Kobayashi join Coval in sharing their experiences of life in Chicago through spoken word.

Join us in celebrating Chicago’s rich tradition of storytelling on Wednesday, June 28, at Haymarket Pub & Brewery, 737 W. Randolph St.

Every ticket purchase benefits innovative learning programs at Chicago Public Library, including YOUmedia, teen digital learning space that fosters high school students’ creative expression.

Tickets are $15 in advance ($20 at the door).

Raffle tickets $5 – Prizes include theatre tickets, restaurant gift cards and more!

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Kevin Coval
Kevin Coval is a poet and community builder. As the artistic director of Young Chicago Authors, founder of Louder Than A Bomb: The Chicago Youth Poetry Festival, and professor at the University of Illinois-Chicago—where he teaches hip-hop aesthetics—he’s mentored thousands of young writers, artists, and musicians.

He is the author and editor of 10 books, including The BreakBeat Poets: New American Poetry in the Age of Hip-Hop and Schtick, and co-author of the play, This is Modern Art. His work has appeared in Poetry Magazine, The Drunken Boat, Chicago Tribune, CNN, Fake Shore Drive, Huffington Post, and four seasons of HBO’s Def Poetry Jam. Coval’s recent collection, A People’s History of Chicago dropped in April 2017 on Haymarket Books.

Patricia Frazier
African American Poet, Filmmaker and activist Patricia Frazier was raised in Chicago’s Bronzeville neighborhood. Influenced by the mentors she has growing up such as Fatimah Asghar, Jamila Woods, Regina Berg, and Mama Brenda, her writing aims to highlight the intersections of the multifaceted identities Black women have. Much of her work focuses on exploring environmentalism, sexual fluidity, and black womanism.

She was a two-time finalist in Louder Than a Bomb Team finals in 2014 and 2017, and the 2016 Louder Than a Bomb Jordan Slam winner along with Arielle Appleberry. Her work appears in the National Creative Commons 2014 Poetry Anthology, and Women’s ENews. She has performed on stages such as the Allstate Arena and Playhouse theatre and appeared on the same stages as Chance the Rapper, Macklemore, and Ciara. Her poem “I am Windy City” is to be featured in Northwestern University Press’s forthcoming Book “The End of Chiraq.”

Jalen Kobayashi
Jalen Kobayashi is a 16 year old poet and rapper from the northwest side of Chicago. He attends Whitney M. Young Magnet High School. Some of his inspirations include Montana of 300, Saul Williams, and Lupe Fiasco. Some of his main topics include Chicago, the impoverishment of minorities, and educational injustice. He has an unbreakable bond with God, however is not considered to be religious. Working at Young Chicago Authors, Jalen has also performed at the Allstate Arena, the Arie Crown Theater, and in front of public figures such as Common, Macklemore, Paula Abdul, Ciara, and lots of other rich white people. Outside of poetry, he plays football and baseball, has been on the Math Team, and competed in the Battle of the Books competition. He enjoys listening to music and writing new raps everyday.

E’mon Lauren
E’mon Lauren. November 9, 1996. Southside Chicago. Redline. Harold’s Chicken. Mild sauce. Early graduate. Slam poet. Louder Than a Bomb champion. ‘14. Louder Than a Bomb Indy finalist. ‘14. Brave New Voices. ‘13 & ‘14. Louder Than a Bomb College Slam champion. ‘16. Chicago’s Youth Poet Laureate. ’16. Playwright “Commando”. ‘16. Performed at PITCHFORK Music Festival, Allstate Arena, Goodman Theatre, etc. Vocalist. Emcee. Teaching artist. Published artist. The Breakbeat Poets: New American Poetry in the Age of Hip-Hop. ‘15. Performing artist. Non-binary agender. Womyn. Humyn.

A People’s History of Chicago: What the City Sounds Like
Haymarket Pub & Brewery
737 W Randolph St.
Chicago, IL 60661
Wednesday, June 28
6:30 – 9:00 pm