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Annual ‘Left of the Bank’ evening set for April 17

By Staff | Mar 27, 2015

Friends of the Shepherdstown Library holds its 11th annual “Left of the Bank” Magical Evening of Poetry and Music on April 17 at 7:30 pm in the intimate setting of La Casa de Carlos e Isabel at 202 South Princess Street, Shepherdstown, just to the left of Jefferson Security Bank

Held each year during National Poetry Month, this popular cultural event celebrates poetry and this area’s fertile poetry scene. This year’s roster of poets features Stephen Altman, Lin Batton, Earl Hairston, Sonja James, and Christa Mastrangelo. Their work runs the gamut of contemporary poetry, from performance poetry to narrative sonnet-making. The inimitable Ed Zahniser serves as Master of Ceremonies. Music is by Laura First with Don Oehser.

On commenting on why she supports Left of the Bank, associate producing director of the Contemporary American Theater Festival (CATF) Peggy McKowen said, “One year I actually read some work – some slam poetry and play text from Sam Shepard’s work. It was so wonderful to share another side or an artist’s work with a group of people that appreciated the skill required to journey between writing poetry and writing plays. It is truly an impressive event and community – a literate bunch that treasures the artistry of the written word. I give credit in part to the Library for engaging our community and creating value for the importance and beauty of storytelling and words.”

Guests enjoy tantalizing appetizers and delectable desserts, with a fine beer and wine selection or soft drinks. Doors open for refreshments at 7:00 pm, and the two-hour program starts at 7:30. All proceeds fund programs and materials for the Shepherdstown Public Library.

“Left of the Bank is like Harry Truman,” Master of Ceremonies Ed Zahniser says. “We got our start in a clothing store on German Street. Now we hold forth in Shepherdstown’s former school bus garage with its purple roof on Princess Street. I missed one year for a funeral. Don Oehser missed one year for a wedding. FOSL demanded written excuses.”