Calliope Author Readings with Lynne Sharon Schwartz
Tuesday March 18, 2014
Lynne Sharon Schwartz, author and co-director of Calliope Author Readings, presented a two volume CD collection of legendary authors reading from their works when they were young. These readings were recorded from the late 40's to early 60's and include such authors as James Baldwin, James Jones, Philip Roth, and John Updike. The CDs were reissued this February.
Calliope Author Readings offers lovers of literature a rare opportunity to hear great 20th century American authors interpreting their own works.
Calliope began in the 1960’s as a unique venture in the early days of literary recordings. With little more at their disposal than a passion for books, optimism, and sheer nerve, three young entrepreneurs in Boston persuaded some of the most original voices of the era to participate by reading selections from their works. The readings were produced on 7” long-playing records to be sold in bookstores.
They were welcomed and highly praised. “Superb,” critic John Ciardi of The Saturday Review called them. The Chicago Daily News found each recording marked by “the unmistakable stamp of personal passion.” Today the cultural and historical value of these recordings makes them an essential part of our heritage.
These unique recordings, from 14 to 24 minutes each, are now available to a brand-new audience, in the form of CDs and downloads. The nine selections are on two CDs, which can be ordered separately or together, or as individual downloads.
"At 30, Updike's voice is hesitant, careful, a bit precious." wrote NPR when they interviewed Schwartz about the collection. Read the full story here.
Lynne Sharon Schwartz is the author of 21 books, including novels, story collections, non-fiction, poetry, and translations from Italian. Her most recent are the poetry collection, See You in the Dark; the memoir, Not Now, Voyager; the novel, The Writing on the Wall; and Referred Pain, a collection of stories. She is also the editor of The Emergence of Memory, an anthology of interviews with and essays on W.G. Sebald. She has received awards from the Guggenheim Foundation, the National Endowment for the Arts, and the New York State Foundation for the Arts She is a faculty member at the Bennington College Writing Seminars and the Columbia University Writing Program.