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Staceyann Chin, winner of several poetry slam contests and performer on HBO’s Def Poetry Jam, will read from her works 7:30 p.m. tonight in the Farinon Center snack bar.
The event is free and open to the campus community.

A resident of New York City and a Jamaican national, Chin has been a practicing poet since 1998. From the rousing cheers of the Nuyorican Poets’ Cafe to one-woman shows off-Broadway to poetry workshops in Denmark and London, Chin credits the long list of “things she has done” to her grandmother’s hard-working history and the pain of her mother’s absence.

Chin has shared her poetry at many other institutions of higher education, including NYU, Pace, Willamette, Holy Cross, Harvard, Cornell, University of Illinois, University of New Hampshire, University of Miami, University of California at San Diego, Boston University, and Grinnell College.

Her competitive achievements include winning the 1999 Chicago People of Color Slam, first runner-up in the 1999 Outright Poetry Slam, winner of the 1998 Lambda Poetry Slam, finalist in the 1999 Nuyorican Grand Slam, winner of the 1998 and 2000 Slam This!, and winner of WORD: The First Slam for Television.

Chin has been featured on cable access programs in Brooklyn and Manhattan as well as many area radio stations, including WHCR and WBAI. The Joseph Pap Public Theatre has featured her and she has enjoyed success internationally, performing in London, Denmark, Germany, and New York’s Central Park Summer Stage.

In 1999, Chin took the American Amazon Slam title in Aarhus, Denmark. Her personal history, photo, and work graced the cover of the national newspaper The Politiken as well as the controversial publication Ekstra Bladet. Since then, many more Danish newspapers have voiced their opinion of the poet from Montego Bay, Jamaica: The Information, Retorik Magasinet, and Berlingske.

Various American publications, including the magazines A, Everybody, Mosaic, Curve, Venus, The New York Foundation for the Arts’ FYI, and Jane, as well as the newspapers New York Newsday, The Village Voice, and Drum Voices, have featured Chin. Her work has been published in many journals and newsletters, as well as the New York Times, Washington Post, and Pittsburgh Daily. Her work also aired on “60 Minutes.”

Hands Afire, Chin’s first one-woman show, ran for ten weeks at the Bleecker Theater in New York in the summer of 2000. The same off-Broadway theater welcomed her second show, Unspeakable Things, in the summer of 2001 before she took it to Copenhagen for a week-long run.

Chin has also been the subject of on-screen ventures. The film Staceyann Chin was released in theaters in Denmark in 2001. It also aired on the Danish national television station. “Between the Lines,” a documentary that explores the notion of being Asian and woman and writer, is the latest to feature Chin, who was nominated for the Rolex Mentor and Protege Art Initiative last year.

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