The first WitFest -- L.A.-area authors, writers and artistes vying for top scores in an irreverent war of words -- will feature moderator Sandra Tsing Loh and panelists Jonathan Gold, Suzanna Guzman, David Kipen, Patt Morrision, Gary Phillips and Nat Read Thursday, Oct. 25, from 7 to 10 p.m.. in the ballroom of the historic Castle Green, 99 S. Raymond Ave. in Old Pasadena.
The competition promises to be filled with snappy questions and clever repartee. Wine and passed hors d’oeuvres will be provided. The creation of the inaugural Pasadena Prizes in Poetry and Prose, awarded to local high school students to encourage literary arts, will be announced.
Gold is an author and Pulitzer Prize-winning food critic; Guzman is an operatic mezzo-soprano and host of KCET’s “Open Call”; Kipen is a KPCC literary critic and founder of the lending library Libros Schmibros; Loh is an author, performance artist and NPR commentator; Morrison is an author and Los Angeles Times columnist; Phillips is a mystery writer; and Read is a public relations practitioner, author and stand-up comic.
“Some of the greatest wits in Southern California will be front and center for this rollicking evening,” said Larry Wilson, artistic director of LitFest Pasadena. “Anyone who loves literature and entertainment won’t want to miss it.”
Ticket prices are $75 each or two for $125; patron levels range from $250 to $5,000. Tickets may be purchased online here or by check. Checks should be made out to Pasadena Arts Council, with LitFest Pasadena in the memo field, and mailed to LitFest Pasadena, P.O. Box 93184, Pasadena CA 91109. Tickets are tax-deductible to the full extent of the law.
Proceeds from WitFest will benefit the second annual LitFest Pasadena scheduled for Saturday, May 11, 2013, a free day of literary panel discussions, readings, theater performances, exhibitors, live music, children’s activities and more. Nearly 2,000 people attended the first LitFest Pasadena in May 2012.