Anyone interested in performing an original work, or a piece in the public domain, will have a chance to read during the Open Mic Night at 7 p.m. tonight in the lower level of the library, outside the university’s special collections and archives.

“The main focus is more on the literary side, part of why we’re doing this is we have an exhibit right now on the literature of William Allen White,” said Rebekah Curry, public services supervisor of the university libraries and archives. “So, our idea was to do a tie in with that and to feature a number of events this month with a literary theme.”

The event will feature Kevin Rabas, chair of the English, modern languages and journalism department, and poet laureate of Kansas as a guest artist.

“I know Kevin (Rabas), I’ve done a playwriting/screenwriting class with him, and I’ve participated in a couple open mic nights, one for the Black Writer’s Club, one for First Friday, and I like reading poetry,” said Justin Scheck, junior theatre major.

As the event will be recorded and published online, those performing at the event should only bring original works or works that are otherwise available in the public domain.

“Special Collections and Archives is hosting an Open Mic Night! Come to share and enjoy poetry, music, comedy, or whatever your talent may be,” said the event page on Emporia State University’s website

People are not limited to performing just poetry. Music, comedy and other talents are among the options for performings, according to the event’s facebook page. As long as it can be presented in an open mic format, attendees are welcome to perform whatever they would like, Curry said.

Anyone looking to perform can do so simply by signing up when they show up at the event.

“Of course we have Kevin Rabas, being our featured performer, but it’s just going to be a surprise who comes and what they do,” Curry said.

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