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Farewell to the Interludes

June 03, 2004|Bernadette Murphy

The monthly salon Spoken Interludes has presented tidbits of works in progress by Los Angeles' hottest writers, dinner-theater style, for the past eight years. It's based on the idea that "if you put people together with food and drink and literature, they can't help but get to know each other," founder DeLaune Michel says. The final chapter here, though, is about to be written.

Michel, an author-actress who is moving to New York for personal reasons and taking the series with her, is planning a blowout farewell Sunday. Held at the Skirball (rather than its regular venue, the Tempest Supper Club in West Hollywood, which can accommodate only 100 or so), the evening will feature some L.A. favorites: author-screenwriter Jerry Stahl; poet, essayist and fiction writer Carol Muske-Dukes; memoirist Bernard Cooper; comedian Taylor Negron and Michel.

"It's always been really fun," says Cooper, who's participated in a number of evenings. The events, he says, "bring in a group of enthusiastic people who don't necessarily go to readings at bookstores; it's a mixture of writers, actors writing monologues and comedians."

Though L.A. may not be perceived as a community that appreciates its writers, Michel says her experience has proven the opposite. "People love coming out and getting to hear the work, to sit and be told a wonderful story," she says. "It speaks to our humanity."

-- Bernadette Murphy

Spoken Interludes, Skirball Cultural Center, 2701 N. Sepulveda Blvd., L.A. Sunday, 6 to 7:30 p.m., dinner and reception; 7:30 p.m., readings and signings. $12.50 at the door; food not included. (310) 475-9204, www.spokeninterludes.com.

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