Terri Allard of Charlottesville Inside-Out, talks with award-winning poet and author Rita Dove.
Rita Dove is a former U.S. Poet Laureate (1993-1995), former Virginia Poet Laureate (2004-2006), and recipient of the 1987 Pulitzer Prize in poetry for her verse-novel Thomas and Beulah (1986). The author of numerous books, among them the 2009 tour de force Sonata Mulattica, a poetic treatise on the life of 19th century violinist George Bridgetower, and, most recently, Collected Poems 1974-2004, she also edited The Penguin Anthology of Twentieth- Century American Poetry (2011). Her drama “The Darker Face of the Earth” premiered in 1996 at the Oregon Shakespeare Festival and was produced at the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C., as well as the Royal National Theatre in London, among other venues. In 1998 the Boston Symphony debuted her song cycle “Seven for Luck” with music by John Williams, under the composer’s baton. Among Rita Dove’s many honors are the 2011 National Medal of Arts from President Obama, the 1996 National Humanities Medal from President Clinton and 25 honorary doctorates. Currently she is Commonwealth Professor of English at the University of Virginia.
Photo of Rita Dove: Courtesy of University of Virginia, photo by Sanjay Suchak
Photo of Terri Allard: Courtesy of C-VILLE Weekly, photo by Ryan Jones