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Poetry reading with jazz quartet to open Ellison centennial events

BY ROD JONES, Oklahoma City University Modified: January 29, 2013 at 2:25 pm •  Published: January 29, 2013

class="Body">In addition to his books of poetry, Lansana is the author of the children’s book, “The Big World” (1999), and co-editor of “Dream of a Word: The Tia Chucha Press Poetry Anthology” (2006) and “Role Call: A Generational Anthology of Social and Political Black Literature and Art” (2002). Lansana received the 1999 Henry Blakely Award, which was presented by Brooks, and the 2000 Poet of the Year Award from Chicago’s Black Book Fair.

He is a former director of the Gwendolyn Brooks Center for Black Literature and Creative Writing. He offers poetry workshops for students in kindergarten through 12th grade. He lives in Chicago with his wife and children and teaches for both Chicago State University and the Red Earth MFA program.

The New Growth Jazz Quartet (NGJQ) was founded in the summer of 2010. The group is dedicated to swinging, organic structures and an appreciation for a wide variety of musical idioms both within and outside the jazz context.

The NGJQ members are Adam Ledbetter, pianist and composer; Grant Goldstein, guitarist and composer; Aaron Tomasko, bassist; and Jemar Poteat on drums.

Books will be available for purchase and signing at the performance.

For more information on the Red Earth MFA Program visit the website at