Oh, it’s going to be a wonderful week. This 19 January marks the 200th anniversary of the birth of Edgar Allan Poe, one of the most influential figures in modern fiction. Here at Re:Print, we will be marking the occasion with a full week of Poe-related goodness. Today, we will run through a few of the biggest and best Poe events around the place. Tomorrow and throughout the rest of the week, we’ll be scouring the Internet for the best Poe celebrations, and bringing you some exclusive interviews with some major Poe fans in the literary world including Laura Lippman, Charles Todd, and Hallie Ephron. We will also present a short guide to building your contemporary Poe library — not a difficult task as, it would appear, Poe’s hold over readers and writers has yet to wane. Featured throughout our tribute, will be original photography by Stacy Lenore Reed, a photographer, writer, and Poe fan in Richmond, Virginia.
The best place to go for news and information about Poe celebrations for the entire year is the phenomenal A Year of Events in Poe’s Virginia. The site offers both a blog and a calendar keeping visitors well up to date with news of key going on in and around the Richmond area, where Poe spent a significant amount of creative time. Happening in Richmond just this week are candlelight walks, a 24-hour Poe brithday bash, a portrait exhibit, and a musical tribute. And as the year goes on, you can visit Poe-realted symposiums, talks, lectures, more exhibits, and even a cemetery tour. Clearly, for the Poe fan, Richmond is the place to be this bicentennial year.
Baltimore has its own Poe party going on tonight with screening at the Westminster Hall of the 1961 film, The Pit and the Pendulum and a performance of “The Black Cat”. The free event starts at 7pm.
Read all about Poe influence on some top writers and entertainers at the Edgar Allan Poe 200 Project. Michael Connelly is among the interviewees, as is Alan Parsons and movie producr Gale Anne Hurd. Upcoming interviews are scheduled with actress Evangeline Lilly and others.
Baltimore’s Westminster Hall will play host, too, to a Poe tribute by John Astin of The Addams Family, who will spend a dark hour reading from Poe’s most recognized works, as well as discussing the writer’s life and times. That’s going to be huge. It takes place 31 January.
“Poe in his Times” with scholar David Reynolds at the Edgar Allan Poe National Historic Site in Philadelphia.
If you go here, you can listen to a podcast of “The Great Poe Debate”, featuring Philadelphia’s Poe scholar Ed Pettit, Jeff Jerome, curator of Baltimore’s Edgar Allan Poe House and Museum, and Paul Lewis, Professor at Boston College, who seek to once and for all end the argument of which state can lay claim to Poe and his genius. The fascinating discussion was recorded on 13 January.
And the celebrations don’t end there. Right up until the end of the year, you’ll find something Poe-related to do up and down the East Coast of America. In between, check back here tomorrow for our exclusive interview with Hallie Ephron about just how Poe has influenced her best-selling works.