Award-winning poet Quincy Troupe has been nominated as one of three finalists for the state of California's first official poet laureate.
Troupe, a professor of literature at the University of California, San Diego, was selected as a finalist by a five-member California Arts Council review panel. The other finalists are Francisco X. Alarcon of Davis and Diane Di Prima of San Francisco. The three finalists were selected from a pool of 55 nominees. Governor Gray Davis is expected to name the state's first poet laureate by July, subject to confirmation by the state senate.
"I feel both honored and blessed to have been selected as a finalist for California's first poet laureate," said Troupe. "I have been promoting poetry for as long as I can remember so the opportunity to bring the world of poetry into peoples' lives on this scale would be a delight. I am thankful to all my friends and colleagues at UCSD who have supported me over the last decade and to my friends and collaborators at the Museum of Contemporary Art who believed in me enough to nominate me for this honor."
Troupe, a well-known poet, performer, and editor, was nominated for the poet laureate position by Hugh Davies and Anne Farrell of the Museum of Contemporary Art, San Diego. The author of 13 books, including six volumes of poetry, Troupe is the winner of the prestigious Heavyweight-Champion of Poetry (1994, 1995) sponsored by the World Poetry Bout of Taos, New Mexico. He is the founding editorial director for Code magazine and the artistic director for the acclaimed program Artists on the Cutting Edge X: Cross Fertilizations, sponsored by the Museum of Contemporary Art, San Diego. The literary and performing art series, which is curated by Troupe, is being held this year from April 4 through May 2.
"We are thrilled that Quincy Troupe is a finalist for this important new position," said Frantisek Deak, UCSD's Dean of Arts and Humanities. "This nomination is a tribute to Quincy's considerable talents as a poet, a performing artist, and a scholar, and I can think of no better candidate for California's first poet laureate. We at UCSD are proud of him, and have no doubt that with his insight, enthusiasm, and charisma, he would open up a whole new world of poetry to Californian's of all ages."
Among his many honors, Troupe is the recipient of two American Book Awards for poetry and non-fiction and the Peabody Award for co-producing and writing the radio show, The Miles Davis Radio Project. He has had poetry, articles, and essays in more than 200 publications throughout the world. Troupe edited James Baldwin: The Legacy and was co-author with noted jazz musician Miles Davis of the best-selling Miles: The Autobiography. He is also the author of the highly acclaimed book "Miles and Me," and he has completed a screenplay that will be the basis for an upcoming film. His 13th book, take it to the hoop, Magic Johnson, based on his work "poem for Magic," was published as a children's book. He recently completed a children's book on Steve Wonder called Little Stevie. His recent poetry books include Avalanche, Choruses, and Transcircularities: New and Selected Poems, which will be published in Oct.2002.
According to the California Arts Council, the poet laureate would provide a minimum of six public readings during his or her two-year term, ensuring that Californians would have access to at least one reading during the course of the term. The poet will also undertake a specific project that will last through the term that is agreed upon by the poet laureate and the council. One of the goals of the new position is to bring the poetic arts to Californians and to California students who might otherwise not be exposed to poetry.
Dolores Davies, 858.534.5994 or firstname.lastname@example.org