No Blue Memories: The Life of Gwendolyn Brooks

No Blue Memories: The Life of Gwendolyn Brooks brings to life the story of one of Chicago’s most beloved figures. She was an icon, a poet laureate, and a Pulitzer Prize winner—but she was also a treasured educator and mentor to the countless writers and children who knew her as their very own “Miss Brooks.” Weaving together poetry, storytelling, sound design, original music, and striking visuals, No Blue Memories is an exploration of Brooks’s beloved city and a story of how she navigated identity, craft, and politics over the course of one of the most remarkable careers in American literary history. The performance combines intricate paper puppetry, live actors working in shadow, and an original score for an unforgettable multi-media experience.

Commissioned by the Poetry Foundation for the Brooks Centenary, No Blue Memories will receive two weeks of free performances in November 2017 for both the general public and Chicago Public School students.

Friday, November 17th, 6:30 PM
Saturday, November 18th, 6:30 PM
Sunday, November 19th, 2:00 PM

Pritzker Auditorium
Harold Washington Library Center
400 South State Street
Enter on South Plymouth Court

This program is first come, first served.
Doors open one hour before start time.

A Manual Cinema Production
Commissioned by the Poetry Foundation
Written by Crescendo Literary (Eve L. Ewing and Nate Marshall)
Directed by Sarah Fornace
Music by Jamila Woods and Ayanna Woods
Storyboards by Drew Dir
Puppet Design by Drew Dir and Lizi Breit
Costume Design by Mieka van der Ploeg
Lighting Design by Claire Chrzan
Sound Design by Ben Kauffman and Kyle Vegter
Performed by Felix Mayes, Jyreika Guest, N. LaQuis Harkins (Gwendolyn Brooks), Eunice Woods, Rasaan Booker (Haki R. Madhubuti)
Music performed by Ayanna Woods and Jamila Woods
Live Sound Effects by Ben Kauffman
Sound Engineered by Mike Usrey and Kim Kozak
Production Managed by Ben Kauffman and Julia Miller

Watch our companion piece “We Real Cool”, Created by Manual Cinema in association with Crescendo Literary, with story by Eve Ewing and Nate Marshall and music by Jamila Woods and Ayanna Woods.