An Evening with Ocean Vuong

Join the author of Time is a Mother for a reading and conversation about his writing process, his influences, and the themes behind his New York Times-bestselling, deeply intimate second poetry collection.

About Ocean Vuong

Ocean Vuong is the author of the New York Times bestselling poetry collection, Time is a Mother (Penguin Press 2022), and the New York Times bestselling novel, On Earth We’re Briefly Gorgeous (Penguin Press 2019), which has been translated into 37 languages.  A recipient of a 2019 MacArthur “Genius” Grant, he is also the author of the critically acclaimed poetry collection, Night Sky with Exit Wounds, a New York Times Top 10 Book of 2016, winner of the T.S. Eliot Prize, the Whiting Award, the Thom Gunn Award, and the Forward Prize for Best First Collection. A Ruth Lilly fellow from the Poetry Foundation, his honors include fellowships from the Lannan Foundation, the Civitella Ranieri Foundation, The Elizabeth George Foundation, The Academy of American Poets, and the Pushcart Prize.

Born in Saigon, Vietnam and raised in Hartford, Connecticut in a working class family of nail salon and factory laborers, he was educated at nearby Manchester Community College before transferring to Pace University to study International Marketing. Without completing his first term, he dropped out of Business school and enrolled at Brooklyn College, where he graduated with a B.A. in Nineteenth Century American Literature. He subsequently received his M.F.A. in Poetry from New York University. 

He currently lives in Northampton, Massachusetts and serves as a tenured Professor in the Creative Writing M.F.A. Program at New York University.

Ira Glass: Seven Things I’ve Learned

“It’s hard to make something that’s interesting. It’s really, really hard. It’s like a law of nature, a law of aerodynamics, that anything that’s written or anything that’s created wants to be medio-cre. The natural state of all writing is mediocrity… So what it takes to make anything more than mediocre is such an act of will…”―Ira Glass

Ira Glass is the creator, producer & host of This American Life, the iconic weekly public radio program with millions of listeners around the world. Using audio clips, music, and video, Ira Glass delivers a unique talk; sharing lessons from his life and career in storytelling: What in-spires him to create? What drives his passion? How have failures and successes informed his decisions? During his presentation, Ira Glass will mix stories live onstage and help his audience better follow the creative process of one of our foremost storytellers.

An Evening with Fran Lebowitz

“Fran Lebowitz’s trademark is the sneer; she disapproves of virtually everything except sleep, cigarette smoking, and good furniture. Her essays and topical interviews on subjects ranging from the difficulty of finding an acceptable apartment to the art of freeloading at weekend houses have come to be regarded as classics of literary humor and social observation.”—The Paris Review

Author, Journalist & Social Observer

In a cultural landscape filled with endless pundits and talking heads, Fran Lebowitz stands out as one of our most insightful social commentators.

Her essays and interviews offer her acerbic views on current events and the media – as well as pet peeves including tourists, baggage-claim areas, after-shave lotion, adults who roller skate, children who speak French, or anyone who is unduly tan. The New York Times Book Review calls Lebowitz an “important humorist in the classic tradition.” Purveyor of urban cool, Lebowitz is a cultural satirist whom many call the heir to Dorothy Parker.

Lebowitz on frankness: “Spilling your guts is exactly as charming as it sounds.”

Lebowitz on herself: “Success didn’t spoil me, I’ve always been insufferable.”

This is Lebowitz off the cuff. Her writing—pointed, taut and economical—is equally forthright, irascible, and unapologetically opinionated.

Lebowitz was named to Vanity Fair’s International Best Dressed List Hall of Fame in 2008. She remains a style icon. Lebowitz lives in New York City, as she does not believe that she would be allowed to live anywhere else.

An Evening with David Sedaris

Master of satire and one of today’s most observant writers addressing the human condition, best-selling author David Sedaris returns once again with his acerbic humor, social commentary, and outlandish stories. Slashing through cultural euphemisms and political correctness, he will delight the audience with twists of humor and intelligence as he shares both published stories and works-in-progress.

Come early or stick around post-performance for Sedaris’s legendary book-signing sessions.