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Writers Center Stage 16th Season Announced

Writers Center Stage 16th Season Announced

Release date: 5/2/2019

William N. Skirball Writers Center Stage Series 16th season announced

Parma, OH – May 20, 2019 – The William N. Skirball Writers Center Stage Series, presented by the Cuyahoga County Public Library Foundation and its academic partner Case Western Reserve University, will return for its 16th season in September. The series is the signature event for the Cuyahoga County Public Library Foundation and helps support Cuyahoga County Public Library, the nation's top-rated large library system in Library Journal's annual Index of Public Library Services for nine years in a row. 

2019-2020 William N. Skirball Writers Center Stage Series 
All events in the 2019-2020 William N. Skirball Writers Center Stage Series will be held at 7:30 p.m. in Case Western Reserve University's Maltz Performing Arts Center at The Temple - Tifereth Israel located at 1855 Ansel Road, Cleveland, Ohio 44106.  

Jane Mayer & Frank Rich 

Wednesday, September 25, 2019 

Trailblazing investigative journalist Jane Mayer is chief Washington correspondent for The New Yorker, where she covers politics, culture, national security and the #MeToo movement. Previously, she worked at The Wall Street Journal, where she covered the bombing of the U.S. Marine barracks in Beirut, the Gulf War and the fall of the Berlin Wall. In 1984, she became the WSJ’s first female White House correspondent. She is the author of the acclaimed best-seller Dark Money: The Hidden History of the Billionaires Behind the Rise of the Radical Right which was published to acclaim in 2016.

Award-winning journalist Frank Rich writes on politics and culture for New York Magazine, where he is writer-at-large. Since 2008, Rich has been a creative consultant at HBO. He was the executive producer of Veep, the long-running Emmy and Peabody Award-winning comedy starring Julia Louis-Dreyfus.

Rachel Kushner & Piper Kerman

Wednesday, October 16, 2019 

Rachel Kushner is the best-selling author of The Flamethrowers, a finalist for the National Book Award and aNew York Times Top Ten Book of 2013; Telex from Cuba (2008), a finalist for the National Book Award; and The Mars Room (2018), which was shortlisted for the Man Booker Prize.

Soon after graduating from college, Piper Kerman got mixed up in a drug trafficking and money laundering operation. In 1998, she was brought up on charges related to her involvement in the drug operation. Kerman was later sentenced to 15 months in prison. Her experiences behind bars inspired the 2010 best-selling memoirOrange Is the New Black, which was later turned into an Emmy Award-winning Netflix series of the same name.

Michael Ondaatje 
Tuesday, November 12, 2019 

Michael Ondaatje is one of the world’s foremost writers whose artistry and aesthetic have influenced an entire generation of writers and readers. Although he is best known as a novelist, Ondaatje’s work also encompasses poetry, memoir and film. His transcendent novel The English Patient explores the intersection of four diverse lives at the end of World War II. This best-selling novel was later made into an Academy Award-winning film. In 2018, The English Patient was named the best winner of the Booker prize of the last 50 years, in a public vote. Ondaatje’s latest novel is Warlight (2018).

Andrew Sean Greer 
Thursday, March 19, 2020 

Andrew Sean Greer is the author of six works of fiction, including the best-sellers The Confessions of Max Tivoli(2004), for which he received the California Book Award; The Story of a Marriage (2008), which was chosen byThe Washington Post as a book of the year; and, Less (2017), for which he earned the 2018 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction. Less also made best-books-of-the-year lists in The New York TimesThe San Francisco Chronicle andThe Paris Review.

Luís Alberto Urrea & Julia Alvarez 
Thursday, April 23, 2020 

Mexican-American author Luís Alberto Urrea has written 16 books, including the acclaimed novels The Hummingbird’s Daughter (2004), Into the Beautiful North (2009) and Queen of America (2011). His 2004 book,The Devil’s Highway (2004) – a nonfiction account of a group of Mexican immigrants lost in the Arizona desert – won the Lannan Literary Award and was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize. Urrea’s latest book is the novel The House of Broken Angels (2018).

Dominican-American author Julia Alvarez is regarded as one of the most critically and commercially successful Latina writers of her time. Her novels include How the García Girls Lost Their Accents (1991), In the Time of Butterflies (1994), for which she was nominated for a National Book Critics Circle Award, and In the Name of Salomé, which Publishers Weekly called “one of the most politically moving novels of the past half century.” In 2013, Alvarez received a National Medal of Arts.

Carl Hiaasen & Dave Barry 
Thursday, May 7, 2020 

The 2019-2020 season will conclude with two of Florida’s favorite sons, Miami Herald columnists and best-selling authors Carl Hiaasen and Dave Barry. Hiaasen has written more than 20 novels set in his native state of Florida, including the national best-sellers Strip Tease (1993); which was adapted into a film starring Demi Moore; Sick Puppy (2000); Nature Girl (2006); Bad Monkey (2013) and Razor Girl (2016). He is also the author of several popular novels for young readers, including Hoot (2002) – for which he received a Newbery Honor –Flush (2005), Scat (2009) and Squirm (2018). 
Pulitzer Prize and Walter Cronkite Award-winning columnist Dave Barry’s work has appeared in more than 500 newspapers in the U.S. and abroad. He is the author of more than 30 books, including Dave Barry Turns 40 andDave Barry’s Greatest Hits, which inspired the CBS sitcom “Dave’s World” (1993-1997), starring the late Harry Anderson. When he’s not writing, Barry plays lead guitar for the Rock Bottom Remainders, a literary rock band whose members include Stephen King, Amy Tan and Mitch Albom. Barry’s latest book is Live Right and Find Happiness (Although Beer Is Much Faster): Life Lessons and Other Ravings from Dave Barry by Dave Barry (2015).

Ticket Information 

Series subscriptions for the 2019-2020 William N. Skirball Writers Center Stage Series are on sale now. A subscription guarantees your seat at each event. Single event tickets go on sale August 12. Choose your seat when you purchase tickets online at Call 216.368.6062 to purchase tickets by phone. 

For media inquiries contact Bill Lubinger, assistant vice president of media relations and communications, Case Western Reserve University, by phone at 216.368.4443 or 216.870.0962 (mobile), or by email at

The 2019-2020 William N. Skirball Writers Center Stage Series is sponsored by Medical Mutual, Ulmer & Berne LLP, Hathaway Brown, Cleveland Clinic, Cuyahoga Community College, Dominion Energy, Huntington Bank, Jim and Mary Conway, Sari Feldman, Nancy and Joe Keithley, Little Jacket, Jones Day, KeyBank, Merrymeeting Group and Sherwin Williams. 

About Cuyahoga County Public Library
At Cuyahoga County Public Library we are committed to our mission of being at the center of community life by creating an environment where reading, lifelong learning and civic engagement thrive and our vision to be the most convenient library system in the country.

About Case Western Reserve University

Case Western Reserve University is one of the country's leading private research institutions. Located in Cleveland, we offer a unique combination of forward-thinking educational opportunities in an inspiring cultural setting. Our leading-edge faculty engage in teaching and research in a collaborative, hands-on environment. Our nationally recognized programs include arts and sciences, dental medicine, engineering, law, management, medicine, nursing and social work. About 5,100 undergraduate and 6,700 graduate students comprise our student body. Visit to see how Case Western Reserve thinks beyond the possible.  

Hallie Rich
Communications & External Relations Director
Robert J. Rua
Assistant Marketing & Communications Director