April 20, 2009
Contact: Donna Abelli
Development and Marketing Manager

AMHERST, Mass. –The Emily Dickinson Museum and the Jones Library will host “Emily Out Loud: Oral Interpretation with Emily Dickinson’s Poetry,” a three-part poetry series for young people, on Wednesdays, April 29 and May 6 and 13, from 3 to 4:30 p.m. at the Jones Library in Amherst. The program, which is designed to introduce young people to the pleasures of Dickinson’s poetry through reading poems aloud, is part of the museum’s Big Read spring events celebrating Emily Dickinson’s expansive and enduring legacy. Each one of the “Emily Out Loud” sessions will be held in the large meeting room of the Jones Library, 43 Amity St. in Amherst; all are free of charge.

Geared toward young people ages 8 to young adult, “Emily Out Loud” will be led by Joni Denn, a Dickinson Museum guide and retired English teacher. Denn will guide participants through the joys and challenges of sharing the poet’s work aloud with an emphasis on how to make poetry “breathe” through oral interpretation and how to be comfortable in front of an audience.

Because space is limited, pre-registration is required. To register, please contact the children’s desk at the Jones Library either in person or at 413-259-3091. Participants will receive a packet of Dickinson’s poems in advance of the first program.

The Big Read: The Poetry of Emily Dickinson is part of a pilot initiative created by the National Endowment for the Arts in partnership with the Poetry Foundation to celebrate great American poets and the nation’s historic poetry locales. Free copies of a reader’s guide and a teacher’s guide to the poetry of Emily Dickinson will be available to attendees at all The Big Read events. For more information about The Big Read programs please contact Nan Fischlein, program coordinator, at 413-542-2034 or nfischlein@emilydickinsonmuseum.org.

The Emily Dickinson Museum, comprising the Dickinson Homestead and The Evergreens and their three-acre landscape, is devoted to the story and legacy of poet Emily Dickinson and her family. Both properties are owned by the Trustees of Amherst College. The museum is overseen by a separate Board of Governors charged with raising its operating and capital funds. The Homestead was the birthplace and residence of the poet (1830-1886). The Evergreens was the 1856 home of the poet's brother and sister-in-law, Austin and Susan Dickinson.

The Emily Dickinson Museum is located at 280 Main St. in Amherst, Mass. The official museum website is www.emilydickinsonmuseum.org. Beginning March 1, hours are Wednesday through Sunday, from 11 a.m. until 4 p.m.; the museum is closed on major holidays.