Interplay Jazz & Arts Writing Conference

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Woodstock, Vermont

Admission Fees

$850 includes tuition and meals, not residency. Writers who bring a fellow writer or an artist: each receives $200 off tuition.



Writing Workshop I. “Dig Deep and Fly Free”
Instructor: Marv Klassen-Landis

We will read and listen to jazz poets such as Langston Hughes, Amiri Baraka,
Sonia Sanchez, Gil Scott-Heron and Jayne Cortez for inspiration. But we will also dig down deep to discover our own sources: What are my stories? My inner songs and rhythms? My unique voice that I can trust again and again? In prose and poetry, we will explore ways to get the flow going and develop our ear for what is truly authentic in our own writing.

Instructor: Marv Klassen-Landis is a poet, storyteller and theatre artist who is the writer-in-residence at Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center. A co-founder and performer with Children’s Voices Theatre, he has taught creative writing at the high school and college levels and led storytelling, writing and theatre workshops and residencies from Vermont to Colorado. He has published poetry in a variety of journals and is the author/illustrator of a children’s book.

Writing Workshop II. “What’s The Name Of That Song?”
Instructor: Reuben Jackson

Music reviews, criticism and poetry are different rooms in the house of written expression. But how are they related? This workshop will explore (through discussion and writing) the relationships between the genres and how their commonalities can be used to profoundly strengthen any or all of the aforementioned. Bring your curiosity and creativity. Shyness is allowed, but lovingly discouraged.

Reuben Jackson has been the host of Friday Night Jazz on Vermont Public Radio since 2012. He is also a poet whose work has been published in 40 anthologies and in a volume entitled “fingering the keys”—which won the Columbia Book Award in 1991. His music reviews appeared in The Washington Post, Jazz Times, Jazziz, and other journals and periodicals. Reuben was also an archivist and curator with the Smithsonian’s Duke Ellington Collection from 1989 until 2009.

Song Writing Workshops
Reuben and Marv and music faculty will help you write an original song. Then you can sing it or hear it sung, accompanied by live musicians.

Open Writing Studio and Individual Sessions
Throughout the week Reuben and Marv will offer drop-in writing studios for small groups of students to help with getting started or revising. They will also offer one-to-one sessions on a sign-up basis.

Jazz Poetry Jam
Join Reuben and Marv and music faculty and students in a lively mix of spoken words and live music. Read something you’ve written accompanied by live jazz or join in a free-jazz-inspired medley of speaking, singing, playing, dancing!

Come and stir up ideas for a year’s worth of creative work OR come and dedicate hours each day to works-in-progress. We encourage you to attend Workshops I and II each day but then choose your own mix of other options or solitary writing time. Bring your favorite writing tools, samples of your favorite writers, works-in-progress (if any) and clothes that are comfortable for movement. Come and create, surrounded by supportive energy, jazz and the beauty of Woodstock, Vermont!

Cost for the week is: $850. Tuition includes “all camp” sessions, workshops, concert tickets, yoga and tai chi, evening activities and lunch and dinner. Writers who bring a fellow writer or an artist: each receives $200 off tuition.

Contact Information

Marv Klassen-Landis, writing workshops coordinator
33 Clough Avenue, Windsor, VT 05089, 802-674-5808
[email protected]


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