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Westminter Open Mic Reading Series

Friday March 8 / 7:00-8:30 PM

Chavonn Williams Shen's Headshot .jpg

Artist-in-Residence Wendy Brown-Báez will host the third in a series of open mic nights at Westminster with a featured local poet as well as creative works from the Westminster and local community. This is an opportunity for creatives to connect with one another. We are meeting in Westminster Hall. You can come just to listen or share your writing.

Performances will be limited to 5 minutes. Sign up early to reserve a space! Prose or poems: 5 minutes including any introductions or explanations.

Contact Wendy via FB or show up by 6:45 to join the list.


Or sign up via Realm (you will have to create a username and password, it is the system Westminster uses). Due to high interest, readers will be chosen by lottery.

Our feature poet for March:
Chavonn Williams Shen (she/they) is from Minneapolis, Minnesota. She was a 2022 McKnight Writing fellow and a first runner-up for The Los Angeles Review Flash Fiction Contest. She was also a Best of the Net Award finalist, a Pushcart Prize nominee, a winner of the Loft Literary Center's Mentor Series, a fellow with the Givens Foundation for African American Literature, and an instructor for the Minnesota Prison Writing Workshop. A Bread Loaf, Tin House, VONA, and Hurston/Wright workshop alum, her writing has appeared in: Diode, Anomaly, AGNI, and others. Her debut book, Still Life with Rope and River, is forthcoming from Finishing Line Press.

There is free parking in the church's underground garage. The official address is 1200 Marquette and the church is located on the corner of Nicolette & 12 St in downtown MPLS next to Peavey Plaza and Orchestra Hall and on major bus lines.

Kick Off Open Mic featured poet Michael Kleber-Diggs
IMG_8777 Wendy Brown-Baez_Westminster Mike Hazzard.jpeg
IMG_8797 Michael Kleber-Diggs_Wendy Brown-Baez_Westminster Mike Hazzard.jpeg

Feb 19th with featured poet David Mendez

Mike Hazzard_edited.jpg
David and Rick.jpg

photos courtesy of Orlando Diaz, Monica Del Castillo, Ned Haggard, 

Laurie Benson, and George Colburn


My performances cross the boundaries between cultures, between emotional

and transcendent states, between the spiritual and the sensual, and

between poetry and theater. In the Bay Area Express, Natasha Nargis wrote:

"She works the room with maximum theatricality, drawing those who are

transfixed on the drama before them into her vivid, vibrant world."

My style has been described by Stefen, a Berkeley muralist, as "more like a dance"

as I unfold my heart to show the world a reflection of its own beauty.

My hope is that we realize we are not alone,

and my inner landscape affirms that when I perform.


Cuba and Jerusalem, bursting with life and history and humanity, seemed to erupt into the room. Others, about pain and grief and loss, sunk their hooks into us, touched something deep inside. The energy and empathy of her poems was infectious, and it got us all. --Gabrielle Santiago, Patrick's Cabaret





Healing energy and love at 2016 POP UP readings with some of my favorite local poets, and flutist Chrisma



Venus Rising with Marcia Starck 2004


with Word Dancers in Santa Fe 2009

MPLS: Publication party February 27th 2009 with Nadia Giordana


at Altered Aesthetics Gallery Exhibition

The Revolution Will Not Be Televised 2008 

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