Wendy McVicker, poet and host of WOUB’s “Conversations From Studio B” will share her spoken art at “Women Speak” on May 12, in the Baker Center Theater.

Photo courtesy of: Women of Appalachia

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Women of Appalachia Project presents ‘Women Speak’

On Thursday, May 12, at 6 p.m. the Women of Appalachia project (WOAP) will present "Women Speak," an evening of story, poetry, dance and song, in the Baker University Center Theater, on the Athens campus of Ohio University. 

The event is the fourth spoken art event, presented by the WOAP with performances by women living in southeast Ohio. To listen to a WOUB interview about the event, click here.

Founder/curator of the project, Kari Gunter-Seymour pointed out that women naturally come to each other to share words that bring familiarity, support and trust, building strong connections and communities. "Women Speak" encourages female artists to address the way in which living in this region of Appalachia has influenced their lives and therefore their art, with the intent of providing a presentation of spoken art that will prove to be greater than the sum of its parts as themes emerge and entwine throughout the evening.

"Spoken art gives the listener an immediate experience," said Gunter-Seymour. "Just like other forms of art, it takes us someplace. We hear something that tickles across our senses, like it belongs to us. Just that quickly, our minds translate the spoken into the visual connecting us with the artist and the imagery she has created in an astonishing insightful way, enriching us."

This spring’s event highlights the work of 11 writers, singers, musicians and performers, from Athens, Meigs and Hocking counties, offering a variety of topics inspired by real life issues.

Local singer/songwriter Colleen Carow said, "My songs are inspired by women in my life who have gotten back up again. I hope they inspire others to put on their boots, too."

Rita Carnevale reveals her stories with a handful of words and a series of intricate movements. "Living in Appalachia, I find myself naturally in a spirit of prayer and thanks," she said. "Daily, I am reminded of the simple contentment of being alive and the unexplainable mystery of it all."

Poet Cathy Cultice Lentes said her piece entitled "Lost" is about "the things we do to cope when the world falls apart."

"Women Speak" is a sister event to the fine art exhibit currently featured in the Multicultural Art Gallery, second floor, Baker University Center through June 10. The WOAP events are sponsored by the Ohio University Multicultural Center and Womens Center.

The presentation is scheduled from 6-9 p.m., and is free and open to the community. The audience is invited to join the artists of Women of Appalachia in the Multicultural Art Gallery and rooms behind the gallery for a reception immediately following the performance. For more information about “Women Speak” and the Women of Appalachia project, go to www.womenofappalachiaevents.com.