John Farrell as “Walt Whitman: Time Traveler”
Visits the History Project!
The Coney Island History Project will be open special hours from 1-5pm on October 13th and 14th in conjunction with Parachute: the Coney Island Performance Festival. Poet, actor and Whitmaniac John Farrell will be reciting Walt Whitman at the History Project on Sunday, October 14, from 2-4pm. Admission is free of charge.
Mr. Farrell’s one-man show “Walt Whitman: Time Traveler” premiered last year in Ireland. In New York, he has performed as Whitman at the Brooklyn Book Festival, NYC Poetry Festival and Dixon Place. “Walt Whitman, an American poetry icon, was a frequent visitor of Coney’s shores in the 1800′s,” says Parachute Festival director Amanda Deutch, who notes that Whitman ran along Coney Island’s coast shouting Homer and Shakespeare to the Atlantic surf. The limited edition broadside of Whitman’s words on Coney Island pictured above will be for sale at the festival.
Parachute: the Coney Island Performance Festival will feature two evenings of literary readings and two afternoons of poetry workshops. Visit the festival website for details and to make reservations for these free events. The main stage is located in the NY Aquarium’s Alien Stingers Exhibit, in front of the Jellyfish. Doors will open at 6:30 and readings will begin at 7pm both nights. A wide array of established and up-and coming Brooklyn based poets and writers will be presented.
Highlights include Brooklyn Poet Laureate Tina Chang; Martin Espada, called the “Latino poet of his generation”; Joanna Fuhrman, author of Freud in Brooklyn; Sheila Maldonado, Coney Island native and author of One-Bedroom Solo; and a sound installation of a poem by Vito Acconci. Charles Denson, author of Coney Island: Lost and Found, will read a 19th century poem about Coney Island. In addition to the main stage reading events, there will also be surprise site-specific poetry happenings around Coney Island, which will be announced on the festival’s website.
The Coney Island History Project exhibit center will be open on both Saturday and Sunday afternoon for this special event. View historic artifacts, photographs, maps, ephemera and films of Coney Island’s colorful past. Exhibits on view include Abe Feinstein: 50 Years of Coney Island Photography, Inside the Shore Theater: Photographs by Charles Denson and Coney Island Bathhouses: A Lost Culture. In the fall, the exhibit center is open for Coney Island History Project Walking Tours, group visits and special events.
The exhibit center is located at 3059 West 12th Street at the entrance to Deno’s Wonder Wheel Park, which is open Saturdays and Sundays from 12 noon through October. The weekend of the performance festival also happens to be the last chance to ride the iconic Wonder Wheel in 2012! The cars will be coming off next week as the 92-year-old Coney Island landmark begins its annual maintenance schedule.