Featured Authors & Actors 4/8/17

Shruti SwamyShruti Swamy lives and writes in San Francisco. Her work has appeared in The O. Henry Prize Stories 2016, AGNI, the Kenyon Review Online, the Boston Review, and elsewhere. In 2012, she was Vassar College’s 50th W.K. Rose Fellow, and has been awarded residencies at the Millay Colony for the Arts, Hedgebrook, and Blue Mountain Center. She is a Kundiman fiction fellow.

Kelly LuceKelly Luce is the author of Three Scenarios in Which Hana Sasaki Grows a Tail, which won the 2013 Foreword Review’s Editor’s Choice Prize for Fiction, and the novel Pull Me Under, out from FSG in 2016. She grew up in Brookfield, Illinois. After graduating from Northwestern University with a degree in cognitive science, she moved to Japan, where she lived and worked for three years. Her work has been recognized by fellowships from the MacDowell Colony, Ucross Foundation, and the Michener Center for Writers, and has appeared in New York Magazine; the Chicago Tribune; Salon; O, the Oprah Magazine; and other publications. She is a Contributing Editor for Electric Literature and a fellow at Harvard’s Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study, where she is working on her next novel.

Victoria GoldblattVictoria Goldblatt will read “Night Garden” by Shruti Swamy. Goldblatt has been performing for over twenty years. She has done a variety of work including films, commercials, community theater, and voice-overs for TV and radio, along with her show, Cabernet Night with Victoria and Friends. She was the former Casting Director for Stories on Stage Sacramento and has been a member of the Steering Committee for the Playwrights Collaborative in Sacramento for the past eight years.

Matthew AbergelMatthew Abergel will read “Ms. Yamada’s Toaster” by Kelly Luce. Abergel often performs at the Woodland Opera House Theatre, where he recently co-directed the world premiere of Prime Time for the Holidays, written by his husband, Bob Cooner. A former editor and community-college instructor, Abergel is the author of two books published by Simon & Schuster, and a play, Second-Best Bed, produced by Woodland Opera House in 2014. Currently he’s putting the finishing touches on a historical novel about King James. Long ago, he studied dramatic literature and directing as a grad student at the University of Chicago and Stanford. He’s tickled as pink as a marshmallow Peep to read for Stories on Stage.

Featured Authors & Actors 3/11/17

Rachel StarkRachel Stark received her bachelor’s degree in creative writing from the University of California, Riverside. Her stories, poems, and essays have appeared in the inboxes of her professors, siblings, and friends. She looks forward to beginning her graduate studies in creative writing this fall.

Clarence MajorClarence Major is a prizewinning poet, painter, and novelist. As a finalist for the National Book Award he won a Bronze Medal for his book Configurations: New and Selected Poems 1958-1998. Major was a finalist for the Los Angeles Times Book Prize, The Bay Area Book Reviewers Book Award, and The Prix Maurice Coindreau in France. He is the recipient of The Western States Book Award; The National Council on The Arts Award; a New York Cultural Foundation Award; The Stephen Henderson Poetry Award for Outstanding Achievement (African American Literature and Culture Society of The American Literature Association); the Sister Circle Book Award; two Pushcart prizes; the International Literary Hall of Fame Award (Chicago State University); the 2015 Lifetime Achievement Award in the Fine Arts, presented by the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation; The 26th Annual 2016 Lifetime Achievement Award from PEN Oakland; and other awards. He is Distinguished Professor Emeritus at the University of California at Davis.

Jessica LaskeyJessica Laskey will read “Madonna’s Daughter” by Rachel Stark. Laskey is happy to be back in her hometown after spending 2014-15 in Paris, while her playwright husband, p joshua laskey, earned his master’s degree in translation. As an Equity actress, Laskey’s favorite roles include Sally Bowles in Cabaret (UC Berkeley), Mae in Reefer Madness (Artistic Differences), Jenny in Threepenny Opera (California Stage) and several productions with the Sacramento Theatre Company. Laskey is also a freelance writer for Inside Publications—for which she wrote the newly released book, Inside Sacramento: The Most Interesting Neighborhood Places in America’s Farm-to-Fork Capital—as well as for Sacramento Magazine and The Sacramento Bee.

David ScottDavid Scott will read “My Mother and Mitch” by Clarence Major. Scott is a father, writer, and performer with a passion for communal experience. He is a veteran of the group Now Hear This, which presents dramatic readings set to original music. His readings with the series include “Straightaway” by Pushcart Award-winner Mark Wisniewski and “The Origin of Jim Crow” by Anthony D’Juan. Previous credits include Will in Cottonwood in The Flood and Black Boy in Hoodies On, Hands Up!