The audience is a visitor in Walt Whitman’s room as he prepares for his seventieth birthday celebration and questions his success as a man and a poet. He traces the experiences that led to the creation of “Leaves Of Grass,” his lifetime work.
The first part of the performance explores Whitman’s preoccupation with the self and his resolve to write with “free and brave thought.” In the second part of the performance, Whitman’s life is changed forever by the Civil War. Through Whitman’s poetry and letters, actor Stephen Collins helps us experience the poet’s growth into a mature artist who is at peace about “himself, God and death.”
About the presenter
Stephen Collins grew up in Cambridge and received a BA in Literature from UMass Boston. After twenty plus years in a sales career, he is back doing what he truly loves – performing and teaching. Recently he has been teaching seminars on Whitman, Hardy, Shakespeare, Frost, and Contemporary Poetry at various locations.
He also works as a professionally licensed tour guide doing narrated historical tours of Boston. His Whitman performances have taken him all over the country. He now has eight one-man shows and seven courses where his teaching style has been described as a hybrid between lecture and performance.