Metro Weekly

Editor’s Pick – Poetry For The People: The June Jordan Experience

Bisexual Black poet June Jordan is getting renewed attention through a new stage piece co-produced by The InSeries and Theater Alliance.

Poetry for the People: The June Jordan Experience -- Photo: Manaf Azzam
Poetry for the People: The June Jordan Experience — Photo: Manaf Azzam

Twenty years after succumbing to breast cancer at the age of 65, the bisexual Black poet/teacher/activist June Jordan is getting renewed attention through a brand new stage work devised by her longtime personal and professional partner and pianist Adrienne Torf along with Raymond O. Caldwell, the producing artistic director of Theater Alliance.

Described as an “intimate music theater experience, tracing June’s life through her own words,” Poetry for the People is a co-production of Theater Alliance with the IN Series replacing their original planned spring collaboration I Was Looking at the Ceiling and Then I Saw the Sky, a work featuring music by John Adams and a libretto by Jordan that was postponed to fall 2022.

“June Jordan is a name that everyone should know, like Alice Walker or Audre Lorde,” says Caldwell. “Her work imagines a future where Black people live well, where love and politics intermix, and where all people can coexist with harmony, justice, and equality.”

The cast includes Lisa Danielle Buch, Sophia Early, Ezinne Elele, Shana Oshiro, Llogan Peters, and Anna Shafer, as directed by Caldwell and accompanied on piano by Torf.

Running through March 27 at the Anacostia Arts Center, 1231 Good Hope Rd. SE. Tickets are $30 to $50. Call 202-241-2539 or visit

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