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Northwest Missouri State University

News Release

Feb. 4, 2011

Poet, radio host Al Letson to speak Feb. 7 at Northwest

By Nichole Beckman, media relations assistant

Al Letson

Al Letson

MARYVILLE, Mo. - Al Letson, a critical-acclaimed poet, playwright and host of the National Public Radio program "State of the Re:Union," will  speak at Northwest Missouri State University as part of its  Distinguished Lecture Series and Black History Month commemoration.

Letson will speak at 8 p.m. Monday, Feb. 7, in the Charles Johnson Theater. The lecture is free and open to the public.

Letson began his career in poetry and participated in several poetry competitions to feed his passion. After establishing himself early as a heavyweight in the poetry slam movement, Letson began to perform on local, regional and national stages along with television programs on HBO and CBS. 

In 2008, Letson was one of three finalists to win the Public Radio Talent Quest, an effort to find new voices and programming to launch nationally on public radio. The opportunity led Letson to create his own program, called "State of the Re:Union." The 12-part multimedia program, which emphasizes what small-town residents and city dwellers alike are doing to create community and transcend differences, celebrates American culture and cooperation.  

"Through his intercultural background, Letson offers a different approach to exposing students to different cultural experiences," Director of Campus Activities Angel McAdams Prescott said.  "His presentation is not just a lecture, but more like storytelling that will engage the audience through his own stories and clips of his work."

Sponsored by the Office of the Provost at Northwest, the Distinguished Lecture Series features scholars, world travelers and leaders in their field. For more information contact the Office of Campus Activities at 660.562.1226

For more information, please contact:

Mark Hornickel, Communication Manager | 660.562.1704 | Fax: 660.562.1900

Northwest Missouri State University
215 Administration Building | 800 University Drive | Maryville, MO 64468