Author: Iyanna Armwood
To celebrate the creative mind, the Spring 2017 Rea Coffee House Reading Series was held on March 16, 2017 in Chatham University’s Julia and James Rea House basement. The reading series is held once every semester. Many of Chatham University’s undergraduate writers submit pieces to read. This spring the feature readers chosen anonymously by the Creative Writing Club were Lee Marsh, Carsyn Smith, Iris Marzolf, Claire Wozniak and Anniston Bieri. This was followed by an open mic where anyone could come up and share their own pieces.
Anniston Bieri, first year creative writing major, performed her horror fiction piece titled “First Born.” It is about two sisters moving boxes from their late neighbor’s house which leads to stumbling across a secret about the house. “I figured the reading would mainly consist of poetry, so I thought a horror story might be an interesting twist,” was her reasoning for picking this particular piece to read for this reading series. Bieri got into writing after having realized that she could put her “thoughts on paper and make something that other people could enjoy.” This was the first year’s first time reading in public outside from workshops and class performances and she enjoyed the experience.
Luckily for Bieri and the other readers, the Chatham reading series’ scene is supportive of its artistic students. Kylie Fletcher, sophomore Media Arts major, attended the Rea Coffeehouse reading series this semester because, “I had a lot of friends reading, a lot of my friends encouraged me to read, and I enjoy hearing other people’s poetry.” Fletcher had nothing but nice things to say about the readers and the reading series in general. “I thought everyone did great,” he said. “But—Lee did especially well! —Lee’s poetry was very relatable for me in some ways aside from being engaging.” Fletcher even participated in the reading series’ open mic portion with encouragement from his friends to get over his social anxiety.
Interested writers can look forward to more Rea Coffee House Readings in the future.