Loading Events

« All Events

  • This event has passed.

A Lucky Man Gets to Sing: Celebrating the 20th Anniversary of Cornelius Eady’s “Brutal Imagination”

October 21, 2021 @ 7:00 pm - 8:00 pm

Print Friendly, PDF & Email


A celebratory night honoring the 20th anniversary of the publication of the book Brutal Imagination and the birth of the play at The Kitchen and Vineyard Theatre.

Featuring Cornelius EadyJoe MortonSally Murphy, and Tracie Morris, moderated by Erica Hunt.


Click here to register.

Registration is required.
Suggested Donation $25.
This program will be broadcasted on Zoom.


Cornelius Eady  is the author of Brutal Imagination, finalist for the 2001 National Book Award in Poetry. The play, based on the book, premiered at the Vineyard Theatre in New York in 2002, and received The Oppenheimer Award. In addition to Brutal Imagination, Eady has collaborated with jazz composer Deidre Murray on several theater pieces, including Running Man (finalist, Pulitzer Prize in Drama), You Don’t Miss Your Water, and Fangs.

Eady is also the author of Hardheaded Weather (2008); the autobiography of a jukebox (1997); You Don’t Miss Your Water (1995); The Gathering of My Name (1991), nominated for the Pulitzer Prize; BOOM BOOM BOOM (1988); Victims of the Latest Dance Craze (1985), chosen for the 1985 Lamont Poetry Selection of The Academy of American Poets; and Kartunes (1980).

In 1996, Eady and the poet Toi Derricotte founded Cave Canem, a nonprofit organization serving Black poets of various backgrounds and acting as a safe space for intellectual engagement and critical debate. His honors include an Honorary Doctor of Fine Arts from the University of Rochester, the Prairie Schooner Strousse Award, a Lila Wallace- Reader’s Digest Award, The Literarian Award from the National Book Foundation, The Elizabeth Kray Award from Poets House, and fellowships from the Guggenheim Foundation, the National Endowment for the Arts, and the Rockefeller Foundation. Eady is also a songwriter and musician, collaborating with his folk trio and band Rough Magic. He has served as director of the Poetry Center at SUNY Stony Brook and director of the MFA Program for Writers at the University of Notre Dame and as the Miller Family Chair at the University of Missouri in Columbia.

In fall 2021, he will become Chair of Excellence in Poetry at the University of Tennessee in Knoxville, a position previously held by the US Poet Laureate Joy Harjo.

Joe Morton
is an Emmy Award-winning film, television, and stage veteran, best known as Rowan/Eli Pope in Shonda Rhimes’s groundbreaking series Scandal. Morton currently stars as Teddy Franklin in the new drama series Our Kind of People, which premiered on Fox, September 21, 2021. He recently starred as Reverend Arthur Finer on the series God Friended Me and recurs on The Politician. Morton is also known for his iconic roles in the films The Brother from Another Planet, Terminator 2: Judgment Day, Justice League, and Speed, among many others. He made his Broadway debut in the Tony Award-winning musical Hair, followed by his starring role in Raisin, for which he garnered a Tony nomination and Theatre World Award. In 2016, Morton returned to his theater roots, portraying the iconic comedian Dick Gregory in the one-man show Turn Me Loose Off Broadway and was honored with the NAACP Theatre Lifetime Achievement Award. He reprised his role in Turn Me Loose at The Wallis-Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts in fall 2017.

Sally Murphy
has appeared extensively on Broadway, and in film and television. Her many Broadway credits include August: Osage County, The Minutes, Linda Vista, The Wild Party, Fiddler on the Roof, The Grapes of Wrath and Lincoln Center’s Carousel, where she starred as Julie Jordan. She has appeared Off Broadway in various productions at The Public Theater, Atlantic Theater, Signature Theatre, and Vineyard Theatre, among others. Murphy is a member of Chicago’s famed Steppenwolf Theatre Company, where she has appeared many times, and has also performed at London’s National Theatre and in Berlin, Vienna, and Sydney. Her film and television credits include Succession, Chicago Med, Law & Order SVU, The Good Wife, Scent of a Woman, Fearless, If These Walls Could Talk, and Pollock. She resides in New York City and is a graduate of Northwestern University.

Tracie Morris
is a poet and educator who works in multiple genres including performance art, music, film and cultural studies. She holds an MFA (Poetry, Hunter College, CUNY) and a PhD (Performance Studies, NYU). She also trained at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art. Dr. Morris was the inaugural Distinguished Visiting Professor of Poetry at the Iowa Writers’ Workshop before joining the Workshop as its first African-American tenured Professor of Poetry. Tracie has presented innovative poetry, performance art and theory in over 30 countries and is the author/editor of 10 books (three forthcoming, 2021-2022). Her recent published works are Hard Kore: Poemes/Per-Form: Poems of Mythos and Place (English and French, joca seria, 2017/2018), handholding: 5 kinds (2016, Kore Press), Who Do With Words (creative non-fiction, 2nd ed., Chax Press, 2019). University creative fellowships include the Woodberry Poetry Room (Creative Fellow, Harvard University) and the Center for Programs in Contemporary Writing (Writing Fellow, University of Pennsylvania). Other awards include the Guggenheim Fellowship for Poetry, the Creative Capital Fellowship, New York Foundation for the Arts fellowship and the Asian Cultural Council Fellowship. Tracie is a Cave Canem alumna and former board member and a Master Artist of the Atlantic Center for the Arts. Residencies include Millay, Yaddo and MacDowell colonies. Her installations and performances have been presented by the Whitney Biennial, Dia:Chelsea, The New Museum, The Obermann Center for Advanced Studies, The Kitchen Performance Space, Albertine, Furious Flower, Victoria and Albert Museum, Centre Pompidou, among others. In 2021 she presented her first directed/edited experimental film, Black Spring, a commissioned work for the University of Iowa’s Department of Cinema Studies. Her recorded collaboration with musician Elliott Sharp, (the morrisharp project), duality, debuted in 2021 on Zoar Records.


Erica Hunt is a poet and essayist. She is the author of Jump the Clock: New and Selected Poems published by Nightboat Books and five collections of poetry–Local History,  Arcade, Piece Logic, Time Flies Right Before the Eyes, and VERONICA: A Suite in X Parts. Her poems and non-fiction have appeared in BOMB, Boundary 2, Brooklyn Rail, Conjunctions, The Los Angeles Review of Books, Poetics Journal, Tripwire, FENCE, Hambone, and In the American Tree, among other publications. Essays on poetics, feminism, and politics have been collected in Moving Borders: Three Decades of Innovative Writing by Women, A-LINE, and The Politics of Poetic Form, The World, and other anthologies. With poet and scholar Dawn Lundy Martin, Hunt is co-editor of the anthology Letters to the Future, Black Women/Radical Writing in 2018 from Kore Press. She has received awards from the Foundation for Contemporary Arts, the Fund for Poetry, the Blue Mountain Center, and the Djerassi Foundation, and is a past fellow of Duke University/the University of Capetown Program in Public Policy. Currently, she is the Bonderman Visiting Professor of the Practice in the Literary Arts department at Brown University.


October 21, 2021
7:00 pm - 8:00 pm
Event Category: