Items tagged with Authors

Music Historian Harvey Sachs on “Toscanini: Musician of Conscience”

Please see full event listing for date.

Arturo Toscanini is widely recognized as the most famed conductor of the 20th-century and was once one of the most famous people in the world. But his legacy reaches far past his musical contributions.

Location: The Westport Woman's Club, 44 Imperial Avenue

In author and musical historian Harvey Sachs’s acclaimed biography, Toscanini: Musician of Conscience,  Toscanini is revealed as a man who was incapable of separating his spectacular career from the call of his conscience. In this talk, Sachs will show us not only the Toscanini that brought audiences to their feet, but also the man who opposed totalitarianism with a personal bravery that would make him a model for artists of conscience.

The evening will also include a brief Q&A with Sachs and a rare film footage of the Maestro in action with the NBC Symphony in 1943. 

Note: This event was re-scheduled from from November 15.

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Music, Authors
Authors, Music

13th Annual Martin Luther King, Jr. Celebration with Pulitzer Prize Winner James Forman, Jr.

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The 13th Annual Martin Luther King Day Celebration features keynote speaker James Forman, Jr., the 2018 winner of the Pulitzer Prize for General Nonfiction, Locking Up Our Own: Crime and Punishment in Black America. The event will also include performances from the Serendipity Choir and the Regional School of the Arts.

The celebration is co-sponsored by The Westport Library and Westport Country Playhouse in partnership with TEAM Westport and the Westport/Weston Interfaith Council. Seating is unreserved. Complimentary refreshments will be served in the Playhouse lobby after the presentation.

Location: Westport Country Playhouse, 25 Powers Court

The Westport/Weston Family YMCA will provide childcare and activities in the Lucille Lortel White Barn, Sheffer Studio, adjacent to the theater.

Former public defender James Forman, Jr. is a leading critic of mass incarceration and its disproportionate impact on people of color. Forman graduated from Atlanta’s Roosevelt High School, Brown University, and Yale Law School. He worked as a law clerk for Justice Sandra Day O’Connor of the U.S. Supreme Court. After clerking, he joined the Public Defender Service in Washington, D.C., where for six years he represented juveniles and adults in felony and misdemeanor cases. 

Professor Forman has written many law review articles, in addition to op-eds and essays for The New York Times, The Atlantic, The New Republic, The Nation, and The Washington Post. His first book is the critically acclaimed Locking Up Our Own: Crime and Punishment in Black America (2017), which explores how decisions made by black leaders, often with the best of intentions, contributed to disproportionately incarcerating black and brown people. A Washington Post bestseller, Locking Up Our Own was longlisted for the National Book Award and has been named a Best Book of the Year by numerous publications, including The New York Times, The Marshall Project, Publisher’s Weekly, and GQ. Reviewers have called the book “superb and shattering” (New York Times), “eloquent” and “sobering” (London Review of Books), and “moving, nuanced, and candid” (New York Review of Books). On Twitter, The New York Times book reviewer Jennifer Senior called Locking Up Our Own “the best book I’ve read this year.” The book was awarded the 2018 Pulitzer Prize in Nonfiction in April 2018.

 

Westport Country Playhouse
Talks & Readings, Authors
Authors

Author Ramin Ganeshram on "The General's Cook"

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Join author and Westport Historical Society executive director Ramin Ganeshram for the the launch and signing of her new book, The General's Cook: A Novel. Philadelphia 1793. Hercules, President George Washington’s chef, is a fixture on the Philadelphia scene. He is famous for both his culinary prowess and for ruling his kitchen like a commanding general. Hercules is enslaved in a city where most black Americans are free. Even while he masterfully manages his kitchen and the lives of those in and around it, Hercules harbors secrets. Eventually Hercules’ carefully crafted intrigues fall apart and he finds himself trapped by his circumstance and the will of George Washington. Based on actual historical events and people, The General's Cook follows Hercules' precarious and terrifying bid for freedom.

Reserve a copy of the book from the Library catalog.

Partners: TEAM Westport and the Westport Library

Location: The Westport Woman's Club, 44 Imperial Avenue

Ramin Ganeshram is a veteran journalist, who has written features for the New York Times and for New York Newsday. She is a celebrated food columnist who has been awarded seven Society of Professional Journalist awards for her work and an IACP Cookbook of The Year Award. A professionally trained chef, Ganeshram is the author of several cookbooks. She specializes in writing about multicultural communities as a news reporter and about food from the perspective of history and culture.
More on Ramin Ganeshram from Dan Woog's 06880.

Author photo credit: JP Vellotti

Reviews:

"Brilliantly suspenseful, The General’s Cook offers a swift ride in the company of fascinating characters. Readers will never again see the first president in the same way, nor should they."—Elizabeth Cobbs, author of the bestselling The Hamilton Affair

"The General's Cook intriguingly and vividly brings to life Hercules--President George Washington's enslaved African American cook, and a truly fascinating figure in early U.S. History. Ganeshram's thorough research and extensive culinary knowledge adds a depth to Hercules's biography that other historical accounts lack. You'll definitely hunger for more!"--Adrian Miller, James Beard Award winner and author of The President's Kitchen Cabinet The Story of the African Americans Who Have Fed Our First Families, from the Washingtons to the Obamas

"The General's Cook is redolent with savory details. Ganeshram brings Hercules, President Washington's cook, to mouth-watering life! This novel casts new valuable insight on the complicated legacy of our founding father and the institution of slavery, while showcasing the heartbreaking choices Hercules is forced to make. " —Michaela MacColl, bestselling author of Prisoners in the Palace

"A chef and award-winning journalist of the culinary arts, Ramin Ganeshram offers us a deeply-researched story of a life erased from history, a man whose last name is not mentioned in the record books. As Hercules ushers the young people in his kitchen out of slavery’s shackles, you’ll find yourself cheering for him to throw down his chef’s hat and make his own bid for freedom."—Minrose Gwin, award-winning author of Promise

"This book is the true juxtaposition of food and history, taking us back to the days of George Washington and into the world of his chef, a slave named Hercules. Told with vivid and delicious description about a little known part of our American history, The General's Cook is a book that food lovers really should not miss."--Crystal King, author, Feast of Sorrow

"The General's Cook introduces the reader to a complex mix of people living in and surviving places that have rarely been described with such accuracy; kitchens, urban market places and back alleys, the rural plantation slave quarters and the elite dining rooms of an America predicated on and ruled by slavery." -- Dr. Leni Sorensen, Food Historian, Thomas Jefferson's Monticello (retired)
 

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Authors
Authors

WestportREADS 2019: Author Susan Ross Introduces "Kiki And Jacques"

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Author and Westport Library Trustee Susan Ross will lead a family discussion of her book, Kiki and Jacques, A Refugee Story, which is a WestportREADS companion book. This middle grade novel is about a Somali refugee girl and a local boy facing cultural differences on their way to finding friendship. The story reflects on the arrival of large numbers of Somali refugees to Susan's childhood home in Maine. Kiki and Jacques was chosen for the Bank Street Best Children's Book list. Susan's website is AuthorSusanRoss.com. Books will be available for purchase and signing.

WestportREADS is funded by the estate of Jerry A. Tishman.

Author Susan Ross comments, "Our WestportREADS adult book, Exit West, is a beautiful example of a novel that is able to fully capture the immigrant journey in its complexity of experience and emotion. This is the magic and wonder of fiction! In Kiki and Jacques, I hope kids can similarly feel what it's like to be inside the lives of the characters and begin to share the experience of a refugee child—as well as the challenges facing kids welcoming new and different friends to their school. When I first went to the local library in Maine to meet Somali teenagers in researching this book, the children's librarian told me something I've never forgotten: that in her experience, kids are a whole lot more alike than they are different. I looked around the library in a town that had once been largely one-dimensional and saw Somali kids doing exactly what my kids were doing at home—playing video games, chatting with friends, talking about siblings, parents, and life.

At the beginning of Kiki and Jacques, each group of kids is wary of the other -- but by the end, Jacques comes to realize through school and soccer that he and his new Somali classmates have a lot in common -- though a lot remains different, too, and that's fine."

Susan's upcoming middle grade novel, Searching for Lottie, is a contemporary Holocaust mystery based in part on her own family's immigrant and refugee story.

Riverwalk Level
All ages

RE-SCHEDULED: Music Historian Harvey Sachs on “Toscanini: Musician of Conscience”

Please see full event listing for date.

This event is RE-SCHEDULED due to the inclement weather. THE NEW DATE IS Saturday, March 9 at 3 pm.

Arturo Toscanini is widely recognized as the most famed conductor of the 20th-century and was once one of the most famous people in the world. But his legacy reaches far past his musical contributions.

Location: The Westport Woman's Club, 44 Imperial Avenue

In author and musical historian Harvey Sachs’s acclaimed biography, Toscanini: Musician of Conscience,  Toscanini is revealed as a man who was incapable of separating his spectacular career from the call of his conscience. In this talk, Sachs will show us not only the Toscanini that brought audiences to their feet, but also the man who opposed totalitarianism with a personal bravery that would make him a model for artists of conscience.

The evening will also include a brief Q&A with Sachs and a rare film footage of the Maestro in action with the NBC Symphony in 1943. 

 

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Music, Authors
Authors, Music

Getting Unstuck: Overcoming Anxiety and Distress

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One in four Americans will suffer from anxiety. This staggering rate of affliction is occurring at epidemic rates. Distress, anxiety and fear have become typical in our lives. But it’s essential that we don’t accept these life-sapping dysfunctions as normal. Anxiety happens for a reason and isn’t an inevitable outcome of modern life. Thankfully this affliction can be overcome without meds through a shift of mind.

Location: Suzuki Music School of Westport, 246 Post Rd East

Westport psychotherapist Mel Schwartz, LCSW,MPhil, author of The Possibility Principle: How Quantum Physics Can Improve the Way You Think, Live and Love, will share his methods to help people live a resilient and self-empowered life. Informed by approaches he distilled from quantum physics, Schwartz utilizes the uncertainty principle to help free us from the habitual beliefs and thoughts that misinform and imprison us. He will highlight a bold new way of thinking, liberating us from our past and opening us to new possibilities.
 

Suzuki Music School
Authors

Opioids, Our World in Crisis

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Barry Meier, the first journalist to report about the abuse of OxyContin in the early 2000s and author of Pain Killer: An Empire of Deceit and the Origin of America’s Opioid Epidemic, will trace the history of the epidemic and give insight to how it can be fought. Registration online suggested. This is presented by a partnership with the Town of Westport's Department of Human Services, Positive Directions and the Westport Prevention Coalition.

Location: Westport Town Hall Auditorium, 110 Myrtle Avenue

Barry Meier was a member of the New York Times reporting team that won the 2017 Pulitzer Prize for International Reporting. Meier is also a two-time winner of the George Polk Award. His reporting at the Times concentrated on the intersection of business, medicine, and the public’s health. During his career, he has exposed the dangers of various drugs and medical products, including a defective heart device and a generation of flawed artificial hips. Meier is the author of A World of Hurt and Missing Man.

Library resource guide on Opioid Addiction

Author photo credit Peter Eavis

Pain Killer: An Empire of Deceit and the Origin of America’s Opioid Epidemic will be available for purchase and signing. A portion of the proceeds benefit the Library.

Community partners: The Town of Westport’s Department of Human Services, Positive Directions and the Westport Prevention Coalition

 
Westport Town Hall
Talks & Readings, Authors

End of Life Matters: How to Talk With Family & Friends

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Westport Marriage and Family Therapist Anne Ziff discusses ways to communicate end of life wishes and her book, Your End of Life Matters: How to Talk with Family and Friends, with Pat Wieser. Today, people are facing and beginning to talk more about end-of-life matters during all stages of life. Based on her personal experiences with this kind of conversation—and those also of colleagues, friends, and family—Anne Ziff presents a "how to" communication guide for readers of all ages.

Partner & location: Branson Hall, Christ & Holy Trinity Church, 75 Church Lane

Anne Ziff is a licensed Marriage and Family Therapist, AAMFT Approved Supervisor, writer, public speaker and Assistant Clinical Professor, Department of Psychiatry of the Icahn School of Medicine at Mt. Sinai Medical Center. Her previous books include How to Make Money in Mail Order, The Story of Cub, and Marrying Well: The Clinician’s Guide to Premarital Therapy.

 

Pat Wieser is the Managing Partner of The CharlesChase Group (an executive recruiting firm she founded) and Board of Trustee member of the Westport Library.

Dan Woog 06880 post: "Anne Ziff: “Your End Of Life Matters”

Christ & Holy Trinity Church
Talks & Readings, Authors
Authors

Business Program With Jack Mitchell on Selling the “Hug-Your-Customers” Way

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jack mitchellLearn how to ignite your passion for sales with Jack Mitchell, Chairman of the Mitchell Stores. His newest book, Selling the Hug Your Customers Way: The Proven Process for Becoming a Passionate and Successful Salesperson for Life will give tips to refine selling techniques, boost sales and keep customers coming back for more. 

Location: The Unitarian Church in Westport, 10 Lyons Plains Road

Jack Mitchell is Chairman of the Mitchell Stores (Mitchells/Richards/Wilkes/Marios), a three-generation family business that operates men’s and women’s specialty stores in Connecticut, New York, California, Washington and Oregon that are nationally renowned for their personal service touches and strong relationships. Jack himself has been recognized as one of the top ten retail visionaries of his time by the Women’s Wear Daily. Under his leadership, the Mitchell Stores have become well known for employee engagement and longevity and providing exceptional customer service and high quality merchandise in an exciting, friendly, and visually dynamic atmosphere. 

Jack’s first book, Hug Your Customers: The Proven Way to Personalize Sales and Achieve Astounding Results, was a Wall Street Journal bestseller and received rave reviews in the New York Times. His second book, Hug Your People: The Proven Way to Hire, Inspire, and Recognize Your Employees to Achieve Remarkable Results illustrates a business blueprint to personalize relationships to drive success and achieve greater satisfaction at work.  

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Career, Authors

Author Eric Burns Discusses His First Novel

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After writing 11 works of nonfiction, Eric Burns has written his first novel Mid-Strut. He discusses it with fellow writer and Library Board of Trustees member Susan Ross.

Location: Saugatuck Congregational Church, 245 Post Road East

Kirkus Reviews says, "Burns’ (Someone to Watch Over Me, 2017, etc.) first foray into fiction tells the story of a man driven mad by the changing fortunes of his Pennsylvania steel town. ... It’s an idiosyncratic novel that follows an idiosyncratic protagonist, and Burns does not shy away from the parochial fixations of his and other characters; indeed, he leans into them. Even so, he manages to capture not only their quirkiness, but also their universal humanity. Any readers who live in a place that feels overlooked—or who’ve seen the world of their youth slip away—will relate to the people who populate this tale. An absorbing novel of aging and post-industrialization."

Dan Woog's 06880 "Mid Strut: Eric Burns' Novel Story"

Arnie “Stats” Castig is a fine, upstanding citizen of a dying mid-'60s western Pennsylvania steel town—until he does something heroic, gets fired for it and then snaps. He has lost his job, he as lost his music and for all he knows, he may be losing his wife. And so he seeks relief by immersing himself in the exploits of Joe Namath, “the son he might have had,” another western Pennyslvania steel town boy, who is about to make his debut as a pro football quarterback. What happens to Arnie is unexpected, heart-wrenching, and in its surprising way, miraculous.

Eric Burns has won major awards in three distinct genres. His first play captured the Eudora Welty Emerging Playwrights Competition in 2010, and had its “World Premiere” at the Pittsburgh Playhouse in 2012.
He was named one of the best writers in the history of television journalism, joining such luminaries as Edward R. Murrow, Charles Kuralt, Walter Cronkite and David Brinkley. He also took home an Emmy for writing commentary. As an author, his 1920: The Year That Made the Decade Roar was chosen as one of the best non-fiction books of 2015. Two of his other volumes won the highest award given by the American Library Association, being selected as the Best of the Best in 2004 (The Spirits of America: A Social History of Alcohol) and 2007 (The Smoke of the Gods: A Social History of Tobacco). Mid-Strut is his first novel.

Susan Ross teaches fiction at Westport Writers Workshop and is a member of the Library's Board of Trustees. She is the author of two middle grade novels, including Searching for Lottie, acontemporary mystery based on her family's experiences in the Holocaust, to be published this Spring.

Saugatuck Congregational Church
Authors
Authors