Memoir-themed New Town Revue coming this fall

September 1st’s revue will be a high-powered affair, featuring two visiting writers touring behind their award-winning memoirs: Rob Spillman, (All Tomorrow’s Parties) and Garrard Conley (Boy Erased). Athens music luminary Erin Lovett (Four Eyes) will provide the tunes. Read more about it here.


Next New Town: Tuesday, February 9th @6:30

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The next New Town lineup is out of control amazing! Jessica Handler will be reading prose, Hope Hilton, poems, and long time Athenian Dave Marr will play some songs from his forthcoming album.

Jessica Handler is the author of Braving the Fire: A Guide to Writing About Grief. Her first book, Invisible Sisters: A Memoir, was named one of the “Twenty Five Books All Georgians Should Read” and Atlanta magazine’s “Best Memoir of 2009.” She writes essays and nonfiction features which have appeared on NPR, in Tin House, Drunken Boat, Full Grown People, Brevity, Newsweek, The Washington Post, and More Magazine.

Hope Hilton was born in 1977 in Atlanta, Georgia, USA. Hilton curates, collaborates, designs, publishes, writes, and walks. Recently completed projects include the writing of over 200 personal letters to anonymous participants for College of the Canyons, Valencia, CA, a Topophilia workshop with teens in Bonao, Dominican Republic, AND a project about her love of reading at The Kitchen, NYC as well as in Beit HaGefen Art Gallery in Haifa, Israel. She is the Artist in Residence at Double Helix STEAM School, an adjunct professor of Art Appreciation at Athens Technical College, a consultant for The Georgia Virtual History Project, as well as teaching art to children at Treehouse Kid & Craft and Athens Institute for Contemporary Art . Hilton was awarded a grant in 2010 from the Forward Arts Foundation in Atlanta and was a finalist for the inaugural Hudgen’s Prize.

Dave Marr is an Athens singer-songwriter who released two albums as frontman of The Star Room Boys during the late 1990s and early 2000s. His first solo album will be available in limited release in February in 2016. He currently plays with Bo Bedingfield, Don Chambers, Alan Flurry, Brandon Reynolds, and Thayer Sarrano.

Remixing Shakespeare recap


Our latest New Town Revue was a smashing success. Shakespeare enthusiasts packed the Fire Hall to hear local writers and musicians give their take on the author. Laura Leidner started things off with a selection from her new novel. The UGA New Music Ensemble wowed us with a trio of songs composed by Richard Hunsinger and based on ghost scenes from three Shakespeare plays. Cindy Watkins regaled us with her delightfully twisted take on the Bard. Sujata Iyengar read some found poetry based on her experiences teaching Shakespeare. Finally, two scholars in town for UGA’s Shakespeare conference showed their creative side. Thanks to Sujata Iyengar and the conference Appropriation in an Age of Global Shakespeare for partnering with New Town Revue and helping set up the evening. And thanks to Bart Lemahieu for recording. Here’s a link to a recording of the show.

A little about Saturday’s performers

Hope you will join us for Remixing Shakespeare, a special New Town Revue, in the Historic Athens Firehall (next door to Avid) this Saturday at 6:30.

Here’s a little info about our performers:

Laura Leidner is a writer who lives in Atlanta, where she works in public health. She writes fantasy and sci-fi stories and sings in a folk band called Boo Reefa. She is on Twitter at @laurablorah.

Cindy Watkins is a graduate of the University of Georgia with degrees in English and Animal Science. She lives in Athens with a badly behaved dog and a three legged cat. Some of her involuntary accomplishments include sheep riding, pickle electrocuting, and ghostwriting for eHow. Her favorite remixed Shakespearean work is the 2006 animated movie Romeo and Juliet: Sealed With A Kiss. It’s Romeo and Juliet, but with baby sea lions. It is probably the worst movie ever made and is available on Netflix streaming. She highly recommends it.

Richard Hunsinger is a composer of chamber music and a recent graduate of UGA’s Hugh Hodgson School of Music with degrees in music composition and guitar performance. He is originally from Northern Virginia in the Washington, DC area. He wrote three chamber pieces especially for this evening, all based on ghost scenes from Shakespeare plays.

The UGA New Music Ensemble will be performing Hunsinger’s work. It is a new group created within the Hugh Hodgson School of Music with the intent of regularly reading and performing works by local and other contemporary composers.

Lineup finalized for Shakespeare-themed New Town Revue

The upcoming New Town Revue is organized around the theme of “Remixing Shakespeare,” and will be held in conjunction with the UGA conference “Appropriation in an Age of Global Shakespeare.” All our performers will be riffing on the Bard in their own unique way.

When: Saturday, November 14, 6:30-7:30 PM

Where: Historic Athens Fire Hall, at the corner of Prince Avenue and Hill Street

The lineup:
Cindy Watkins: poetry
Laura Leidner; prose
Music composed by Richard Hunsinger and performed by the UGA New Music Ensemble.

Can’t wait!

New Town Revue needs you (or thou)

What do Breaking Bad, Star Trek, Empire, and Rufus Wainwright have in common? They all remix, adapt, or riff on Shakespeare. New Town Revue is partnering with “Appropriation in an Age of Global Shakespeare,” an international conference about how writers, scholars, and artists make use of Shakespeare. We will host a performance on Saturday, November 14, at the historic Athens Fire Hall.

We need you—local musicians and creative writers—to share your own interpretations of Shakespeare. We welcome any interpretation, no matter how loosely you define it. Please let us know if you are interested by September 22. Email your ideas to .