Hoboken Historical Museum Names Danny Shot as Poet in Residence, Introducing Innovative Poetry Series in November
Building on the popular appeal of the event “Something Old, Something New (Jersey)”
Credit Caroline Schott
· November 2, 3 p.m. – “Broken English Lessons: Through the Eyes of Pedro Pietri,” A celebration of the Nuyorican poetry movement
· December 2014 – February 2015 – “There’s a Here Here,” a poetry-writing workshop for Hoboken high school students, with a public performance
· April 19, 2015, “Something Old, Something New (Jersey) II” – Reprise of popular event featuring works by prominent New Jersey poets read aloud by contemporary NJ poets
Hoboken, NJ – August 12, 2014 – Building on the popular appeal of the event “Something Old, Something New (Jersey)” in April 2014, the Hoboken Historical Museum has named Danny Shot, one of the event organizers, its first-ever Poet in Residence. In this role, Mr. Shot will organize a series of events showcasing the vitality of the poetry scene in and around New Jersey, starting in November.
Danny Shot was longtime publisher and editor of Long Shot, an arts and literary magazine he co-founded with Eliot Katz in 1982 in New Brunswick, N.J. He is both a scholar and writer of poetry, whose work has appeared in: bum rush the page (Def Poetry Jam) Aloud: Voices from the Nuyorican Poets Cafe (Henry Holt), In Defense of Mumia (Writers and Readers), The Outlaw Bible of American Poetry (Thunder’s Mouth), and the French anthology; Changing America: U.S. Poems of Protest 1980-1995 (Le Temps des Cerises), Paris.
Mr. Shot has read his poetry throughout the United States, also appearing on television (WNBC, New York) as part of Felipe Luciano’s Wordchestra. He is proud to have his poetry included in the Occupy Wall Street Poetry Anthology, as he is to have his words included in phati‘tude, as well as being one of the organizers of “Something Old, Something New (Jersey),” which attracted a capacity crowd (over 100 people) to the Hoboken Museum on April 6, 2014.
A native of the Bronx, Mr. Shot was raised in Dumont, N.J., earned his BA in English from Rutgers College in 1980 and teaches English at Brooklyn Technical High School. He has lived in Hoboken for over 25 years, where he and his wife Caroline raised two children.
Poetry Events Debut in November
The first event Mr. Shot has planned is “Broken English Lessons: Through the Eyes of Pedro Pietri,” on Sunday, Nov. 2, starting at 3 p.m. at the Museum, 1301 Hudson Street.
Pedro Pietri (1944 – 2004) was the renowned poet and a founder of the Nuyorican Movement, which emerged in and around the Nuyorican Poets Café in New York’s East Village. Born in Puerto Rico and raised in New York City, Pietri was drafted into the Army and served in Vietnam from 1966-68. On his return to New York, he joined a Puerto Rican civil rights group called the Young Lords, and in 1969, his public reading of his epic poem, “Puerto Rican Obituary,” at the People’s Church in East Harlem, is considered one of the defining moments in Nuyorican history. Pietri’s connection to Hoboken included teaching Saturday courses for the Hoboken School District.
Similar in format to “Something Old, Something New (Jersey),” the event will feature seven Latino poets each reading one poem by Pietri, followed by a poem of their own that was inspired or influenced by Pietri. The event will culminate in a group reading/performance of Pietri’s epic poem, “Puerto Rican Obituary.” Participating poets include Sam Diaz, Sandra Maria Esteves, Mariposa, Papoleto Melendez, Nancy Mercado, Urayoán Noel, Bonafide Rojas, and Juan Valenzuela.
Poet, author and professor Urayoán Noel will give a brief talk on the historical context of the Puerto Rican migration, the life of Pedro Pietri and the Nuyorican Poetry Movement, the subject of his most recent book, In Visible Movement, Nuyorican Poetry from the Sixties to Slam (2014, University of Iowa Press). The event coincides with the Museum’s exhibition, “Hoboken, Ellis Island, and the Immigrant Experience, 1892 – 1924,” on display through Dec. 23, 2014.
Other events will include a poetry workshop in December and performance in February by selected Hoboken-area high school students, inspired by a sense of place, specifically, Hoboken. The title of the event, “There’s a Here Here,” refers to Gertrude Stein’s lament, “there’s no there there,” about her hometown of Oakland, Calif. And on April 19, 2015, the Museum will host the second annual “Something Old, Something New (Jersey),” a celebration of the state’s best-known poets by some of its most talented contemporary poets. A video recap of the April 2014 event can be found on the Museum’s website, www.hobokenmuseum.org/events/museum-videos.
About the Hoboken Historical Museum
Founded in 1986, the Museum’s mission is to educate the public about Hoboken’s history, diverse culture, architecture and historic landmarks. In 2001, the Museum moved into one of the oldest buildings on the waterfront, in the former Bethlehem Steel shipyard, at 1301 Hudson St., Hoboken, where it maintains a series of rotating exhibits. The Museum is open six days a week, 2 – 7 pm on Tues. – Thurs., 1 – 5 pm on Fridays, and noon – 5 pm on weekends. It offers special exhibits, tours, events and lectures, as well as educational programs for adults and children on a weekly basis. An updated schedule of events and an online catalog of many items in its collections are available at www.hobokenmuseum.org. The Museum is a nonprofit tax-exempt 501(c)3 entity.