For Immediate Release
February 3, 2015
Contact: Casandra Hernandez

Tucson Poet Logan Phillips to read from new poetry collection at book release event in Phoenix
Arizona Poet Laureate Alberto Álvaro Ríos will make special appearance at release event presented by Arizona Commission on the Arts and Performance in the Borderlands

Phoenix, AZ (February 3, 2015). The Arizona Commission on the Arts and the ASU School of Theatre and Film’s Performance in the Borderlands will present an evening of poetry and performance commemorating the release of Sonoran Strange, a book-length poetry collection by Tucson poet Logan Phillips, on Wednesday, February 11, 2015. The event is sponsored by AZ Humanities.

Phillips’ work explores the deep contradictions of the landscape and culture of his homeland, the Arizona-Sonora Desert borderlands.

In addition to readings by Phillips, the evening will feature a special appearance by Arizona’s Poet Laureate, Alberto Álvaro Ríos who will read from his own award winning-work.

“In their own distinctive ways, both Ríos and Phillips are demonstrating the vital role a poet can play in our society,” said Casandra Hernandez, Artists Services Coordinator at the Arizona Commission on the Arts. “To have Arizona’s most distinguished and accomplished poet engage in this sort of intergenerational dialogue with one of the state’s most promising young voices is very exciting.”

Performances by dancer Liliana Gomez and musician Gabriel Sullivan (of the Tucson-based psychedelic cumbia band Chicha Dust) will round out the evening.

“We are thrilled to partner with the Arizona Commission on the Arts to produce this vibrant night of poetry and performance for Phoenix’s audiences,” said Mary Stephens, Producing Director of Performance in the Borderlands. “The Arizona Commission on the Arts is a vital force in sustaining arts across the Arizona. Sonoran Strange is an important example of their diverse public programming and direct support of Arizona artists.”

The event will be presented on Wednesday, February 11, from 7:00 to 9:00pm at The Icehouse, located at 429 West Jackson Street, Phoenix, AZ 85007. All are welcome and admission is free.

About Sonoran Strange:

In Sonoran Strange, Phillips explores the deep contradictions of the landscape and culture of his homeland, the Arizona-Sonora borderlands. Published by West End Press, Sonoran Strange is Phillips’ first book-length poetry collection.

With his creative partner Adam Cooper-Terán, Phillips has presented a theatrical version of Sonoran Strange across the US and in Europe as a multimedia performance piece, incorporating video, music, and spoken word. This work was supported in part by an Artist Project Grant awarded to Phillips by the Arizona Commission on the Arts in 2012.

About Logan Phillips:

Born to a family of Irish-Slavic descent and raised in the Arizona-Sonora borderlands, Phillips lived in and around Mexico City from 2006-2011, where he contributed to organizing and hosting the country’s first regular poetry slam series.

Phillips co-directs the transdisciplinary performance group Verbo•bala and received a 2012 Artist Project Grant from the Arizona Commission on the Arts for the performance piece Sonoran Strange. He currently serves as Co-director of Spoken Futures, Inc. whose programs include the Tucson Youth Poetry Slam.

About Alberto Álvaro Ríos

Regents’ Professor Alberto Ríos was named the state’s inaugural Poet Laureate in 2013 and was elected to the Board of Chancellors of the Academy of American Poets in 2014. Ríos is the recipient of the Western Literature Association Distinguished Achievement Award, the Arizona Governor’s Arts Award, fellowships from the Guggenheim Foundation and the National Endowment for the Arts, the Walt Whitman Award, the Western States Book Award for Fiction and six Pushcart Prizes in both poetry and fiction. He is the Katharine C. Turner Endowed Chair in the Department of English and the host of PBS Channel 8, Books & Co.

Ríos has published 10 books and chapbooks of poetry, three collections of short stories and a memoir. His individual works have also been included in “The Norton Anthology of Modern Poetry,” and more than 500 other national and international literary anthologies and journals. His work is regularly taught and translated, and has been adapted to dance and both classical and popular music.

About the Arizona Commission on the Arts:

One of 56 state and jurisdictional arts agencies across the United States, the Arizona Commission on the Arts is an agency of the State of Arizona that supports a statewide arts network. The Arizona Commission on the Arts supports access to quality arts and arts education opportunities for all Arizona citizens; the development and retention of statewide jobs in the nonprofit arts, culture and education sectors; and increased economic impact in local communities through arts-based partnerships that develop tax and small business revenue.

About Performance in the Borderlands:

An initiative of the School of Theatre and Film at Arizona State University, Performance in the Borderlands is a presenting, public programming, and education initiative dedicated to the understanding and promotion of cultural performance in the borderlands.