ALTON, IL – July 29, 2011 – Literary artists ages 16 and up, including writers, poets, songwriters, playwrights, and actors, are invited to present at Jacoby Arts Center’s newly introduced Open Mic: WORDS taking place on third Thursdays from 6:30 to 8 p.m. from September to November and again from February through May. The first Open Mic: WORDS takes place on Thursday, September 15, 2011.

The doors will open at 6 p.m.; presenters begin at 6:30 p.m. Admission to the event is free and open to the public. Audiences of all ages welcome; however, attendees are advised that content may not be suitable for everyone. A cash bar with beer, wine, and nonalcoholic beverages will be available; light refreshments will also be served.

Each artist wishing to present material must pay a $5 fee, giving them 5-10 minute audience face time. The final amount of time allowed to each artist will be determined after the number of presenting artists is confirmed. Pre-registration is requested by sending an email message to or by calling Jacoby at 618.462.5222. No politicking or pornographic material is allowed; artists are also asked to exercise discretion in use of profanity.

Melissa Mustain, Jacoby’s executive director, has also taken on coordinating the literary arts happenings at the Center, including Open Mic: WORDS. Mustain is a writer and poet who is also known throughout the region for her direction of the regional Poetry Out Loud contest for Jacoby for the past four years.

“The focus and intent of Open Mic: WORDS is for literary artists to gain feedback on their original creative works while developing a comfortable repertoire with an audience,” said Mustain. “The other part of this concept that makes it unique is that there are no contests, no prizes, no judges – just words,” Mustain added.

Open Mic: WORDS is available to anyone who wants to perform. Songwriters are welcome to try out a new song, as are performers of poetry, drama and comedy who want to share their new material with an audience. “Just show up and we’ll see what happens. There’s bound to be something different and unexpected every month. That’s what makes this a fun night out for everyone,” said Mustain.

Located at 627 East Broadway in Alton, Illinois, the Jacoby Arts Center is open on Tuesdays-Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Sundays from 12 noon to 4 p.m., closed on Mondays. For more information, visit the Center’s website at or call 618-462-5222.
The Jacoby Arts Center is a nonprofit organization whose mission is to foster the artistic development and economic success of artists, and to expand accessibility to the arts through programs that promote education, participation and exploration.

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