Shambaugh Auditorium

Shambaugh Auditorium

125 West Washington St.

Shambaugh Auditorium is one of the main venues for readings hosted by the Workshop. When Live From Prairie Lights was broadcasted on the radio, we often held readings there too. J. M. Coetzee and Susan Sontag read there. I have heard John Ashbery read there on more than one occasion, and it was where I first heard Donald Justice read. That, for me, was a life-changing event. I felt “the top of my head coming off”—before I’d heard Emily Dickinson’s famous phrase—and the experience remains the standard by which I’ve measured all other readings. I would recommend or, if I may, insist that everyone go the Academy of American Poets website to hear Donald Justice read. In addition to being a perfect poet, his voice is an instrument. I’ve never heard a poet read with more nuanced control of the speaking voice.

– From City Guide: Iowa City by Jan Weissmiller