Strike a Prose: Write from Your Soul (cross-genre)

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National Portrait Gallery, Smithsonian Institution

800 G Street Northwest

Washington, DC 20001

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Strike a Prose: Write from Your Soul (cross-genre)

Friday October 25, 10:00 AM – 12:30 PM

We will view powerful images of the legendary opera singer and activist in the exhibition "One Life: Marian Anderson". Anderson once said, "Everyone has a gift for something." In this creative writing workshop, you will reflect on your special gifts, talents and dreams. We will also look at how Anderson fought for civil rights as a black woman and an artist and imagine how we can use art to change the world.

Led by local writer Willona Sloan, these workshops are open to writers of all levels who are 18+. Materials are provided.

The Smithsonian’s National Portrait Gallery will present “One Life: Marian Anderson,” an exhibition exploring the life of the famed contralto, her achievements and how she became a symbol of the civil rights movement. Recognized as one of the greatest American singers of the 20th century, Anderson is perhaps best remembered for her legendary performance on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial, where she sang in 1939 after segregationist policies barred her from theaters across Washington, D.C. However, this exhibition broadens the focus, delving into underexplored moments of Anderson’s decades-long career as a celebrated singer and diplomat. It also highlights the ways she inspired visual artists, ranging from Harlem Renaissance painter Beauford Delaney to fashion photographer Irving Penn.

One Life: Marian Anderson” will be on view June 28 through May 17, 2020. The Portrait Gallery exhibition is curated by Leslie Ureña, associate curator of photographs. It coincides with two Institution-wide initiatives organized by the Smithsonian, including the Smithsonian American Women’s History Initiative, “Because of Her Story,” and the 2019 celebration of the Smithsonian’s Year of Music.

Please plan to arrive at the 8th and G Street, NW entrance at 9:45am so we may begin promptly at 10:00am. Because this workshop begins prior to public hours, those more than 15 minutes late will not be admitted into the museum.

Strike a Prose Workshops in This Series:

Strike a Prose: Writing for Justice (nonfiction)

Tuesday, October 8, 2019, 5:30 PM – 7:30 PM

Friday, October 11, 2019, 10:00 AM – 12:30 PM

Strike a Prose: Crafting Dialogue (fiction)

Tuesday, October 15, 2019, 5:30 PM – 7:30 PM

Friday, October 18, 2019, 10:00 AM – 12:30 PM

Strike a Prose: Write from Your Soul (cross-genre)

Tuesday, October 22, 2019, 5:30 PM – 7:30 PM

Friday, October 25, 2019, 10:00 AM – 12:30 PM


To sign up for other workshops, please visit npg.eventbrite.com.

Questions, please contact npgeducation@si.edu.

Image Credit: Marian Anderson and Leonard Bernstein by Ruth Orkin, Gelatin silver print, 1947, National Portrait Gallery, Smithsonian Institution

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National Portrait Gallery, Smithsonian Institution

800 G Street Northwest

Washington, DC 20001

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