Readings & Events

36th Annual Reading Series
No Love For Love: The Poetry Center's 3rd Annual Valentine's Day Benefit Monday, February 9, 2009 - 8:00pm
Victory Gardens/Biograph Theater
Peter Sagal, host of National Public Radio's "Wait Wait ... Don't Tell Me!," headlines an evening of romance, love, fidelity and similar afflictions. With performances by Rosie Forrest, Edward Thomas-Herrera, Robbie Q. Telfer and short film maker Steve Delahoyde. Hosted by Jonathan Messinger.

Purchase tickets on-line at the Victory Gardens box office or by calling 773-871-3000.


Hang out with Peter Sagal at our pre-show VIP reception.

6:00pm - 7:30pm

VIP TICKET: $150 - includes general admission to the event, drinks, hors d'oeuvres, a private book signing, and a chance to mingle with Peter.

Tickets for the VIP reception are available at the Poetry Center at 312-899-1229 or online by clicking here.

Due to serious illness David Rakoff was forced to cancel his performance at No Love For Love. The Poetry Center wishes him well and regrets any inconvenience.

As the host of National Public Radio's "Wait Wait ... Don't Tell Me!," Peter Sagal is heard by more than 3 million people every week, on 450 public radio stations nationwide and via a popular podcast. The show passed its 10th anniversary in 2008 as it became the recipient of a presitigious Peabody Award. The hour long show has captivated news junkies across the country with its lighthearted approach to current events, and has become the biggest and most beloved weekend radio phenomenon since "A Prairie Home Companion." Each week, Sagal leads NPR veteran newscaster Carl Kasell and esteemed guest panelists like humorist Roy Blount Jr, comedians Paula Poundstone and Paul Provenza, media personality Mo Rocca and author P.J. O'Rourke through a satirical review of the weeks news in the form of a quiz. It's a revival of "You Bet Your Life" cross-bred with the irreverence of "The Daily Show."

Sagal's first book, The Book of Vice (Naughty Things and How to Do Them) is a series of comic essays about people who misbehave, why they misbehave, and why they're not necessarily having more fun than you are. The Orlando Sentinel said, "Vice is that kind of book full of passages so deliciously funny you keep elbowing the nearest person and saying, ‘Listen, I just have to read you this bit ... .' and Publishers Weekly called it "a hilarious, harmlessly prurient look at the banality of regular people's strange and wicked pleasures."

A native of Berkeley Heights, New Jersey, Sagal attended Harvard University, and has worked in theater as a literary manager for a regional theater, a stage director, an actor, an extra in a Michael Jackson video ("Remember the Time"), travel writer, an essayist, a ghostwriter for a former adult film impresario and a staff writer for a motorcycle magazine. He is the author of numerous plays that have been performed in large and small theaters around the country and abroad. He has also written a number of screenplays, including an original screenplay that became, without his knowledge, the basis for "Dirty Dancing: Havana Nights." He is a radio host, author, humorist and commentator on current events with a remarkably eclectic career and an inquiring mind. He lives in Chicago, with his wife and three daughters.
messengerJonathan Messinger is the author of the short story collection, Hiding Out, which was named a Best Book of 2007 by the Omaha World-Herald. He's also the books editor of Time Out Chicago and founder co-host of the literary and comedy series, The Dollar Store. He co-publishes Featherproof Books, a small press publishing novels and downloadable mini-books. His fiction has most recently appeared in Awake! an anthology from Soft Skull Press, and has been nominated for the Pushcart Prize.

ForrestRosie Forrest is a writer and performer, whose work has been seen in and around the Chicagoland area. She is a featured performer with 2nd Story, Chicago's multi-venue performance event combining storytelling with live music. Rosie's work has been highlighted on WBEZ's Writer's Block Party, and with Tenseforms' annual production, Bringmayflowers. Rosie served as the Artistic Associate and Dramaturg for Northlight Theatre, where she launched Interplay, Northlight's first new works reading series. In addition to Northlight's season, her dramaturgy credits include more than 30 Chicago productions with such theatre companies as Steppenwolf, Goodman, Next Theatre, and Timeline. Rosie has taught Playwriting and Dramaturgy for Chicago Dramatists and Northwestern University, and currently teaches Composition at the University of New Hampshire, where she is a graduate student in Fiction Writing.

HerreraEdward Thomas-Herrera is a long-time artistic associate of Live Bait Theater, and the author of three plays: Of Diamonds and Diplomats, Mondo Edwardo, and Death on a Pink Carpet. He was also a staple of Live Bait's annual Fillet of Solo Festival where he debuted his one-man show, Fun while it lasted: a farewell tour. His directing credits include Stephanie Shaw's Materia Prima, David Kodeski's And Some Can Remember Something of Some Such Thing, and Mary Scruggs's Missing Man. Other directing credits include four installments of the Neo-Futurists' It Came from the Neo-Futurarium! annual festival of staged readings of bad movie scripts.

telferRobbie Q. Telfer is an American poet and poetry slam performer, and has been a featured performer in dozens of poetry shows throughout North America. His work can be found in several slam poetry anthologies and DVDs through the Wordsmith Press, and his poems and criticism have appeared in cream city review, Octopus Magazine #10, and the American Book Review. In 2005, he and five other Chicago performance poets (Joel Chmara, Tim Stafford, Molly Meacham, Dan Sullivan, and Tennessee Mary Fons) founded the Speak'Easy Poetry Ensemble under the direction of slam poetry founder Marc Smith. He is currently the Performances Manager for Young Chicago Authors, a nonprofit that gives creative writing, performance, and mentorship opportunities to Chicago teens. Through Young Chicago Authors, he is the head organizer of Louder than a Bomb, the Chicago city-wide youth slam and the largest team-based youth poetry slam in the world. His second book of poetry My Huge Heart Still Has No Room for You was self-published in 2006 through

delahoydeSteve Delahoyde is originally from Phoenix and moved to the Midwest just over six years ago. By day he works at the advertising/design firm Coudal Partners. He was named one of the top five buzzworthy filmmakers by the Chicago Tribune and his film work has been seen everywhere from PBS to MTV. His writing, usually design or humor focused, has appeared in places like Metropolis, McSweeney¹s, and Time Out. The best place to look up his film work is on YouTube.