"Plumbing the depths of pain, Pozniak’s narration is intense, breathy, and emotional, and is augmented by background sounds of desert winds and distant, echoing Middle Eastern music." -AudioFile Magazine
ASHLAND, Ore. (PRWEB) August 28, 2019
Libretto for the Desert
By Sona Van
Read by Beata Poźniak
Translated by Shushan Avagyan
Published 23 April 2019 ~ Unabridged
Blackstone Audio / Skyboat Media ~ Trade Ed. downpour.com
Blackstone Audio / Skyboat Media ~ Library Ed. blackstonelibrary.com
In Libretto for the Desert, Sona Van’s subject is the Armenian genocide, also known as the Great Catastrophe. Van’s parents and grandparents were driven into exile due to this horrific event. Her poems reflect a personal connection to this history as well as the universality of loss, persecution, and intolerance. Van is the winner of numerous international prizes and medals, including the Homer - European Medal of Poetry. Her work has been translated into over 20 languages, but Libretto for the Desert is the first in English. Van uses poetry as her instrument, saying it is “the most useful tool to rescue compassion, empathy and tolerance—to find common ground for a dignified coexistence and mutual survival of the human species in an otherwise endangered universe.”
Beata Poźniak is an actress, poet, and activist. In 1994 she introduced the first bill in the history of US Congress to officially recognize International Women’s Day in the United States. In her work, Poźniak is drawn to strong female characters, both on-screen and in the audiobook world. Her roles, which have ranged from the first female President of the world on television to Catherine the Great, are a testament to her values as a human rights activist.
“This is music to be felt like the dry wind of the desert, felt on the skin as if a bullet had just skimmed by, barely missing the beating heart.” —Diversions LA Magazine (Los Angeles)
“Beata Pozniak’s accented, dramatic narration conjures a faraway desert land. Sona Van’s abstract meditation on the Armenian genocide of 1915-1917 is dedicated to the victims of all wars and atrocities. Plumbing the depths of pain, Pozniak’s narration is intense, breathy, and emotional, and is augmented by background sounds of desert winds and distant, echoing Middle Eastern music. Pozniak’s artful pauses, varied tempo, and voice full of emotion convey the weight of the horrific events of the genocide and their effects on individuals. The work employs the Armenian genocide as its focus but also touches upon other wars and suffering, including the more recent events in Iraq.” —AudioFile
This moving audio experience is the result of a profound collaboration of friendship and philosophy between author Sona Van and narrator Beata Poźniak. The women are the recipients of the 2019 International Maria Konopnicka Prize, which promotes literature and cultural achievements of outstanding women. Van and Poźniak are women’s rights activists, and their strong stance against war and genocide is paramount in guiding their lives and creative endeavors. The two met in New York through a mutual Armenian poet friend, and as Poźniak describes of her experience reading Van’s poetry, “I kept hearing a voice full of pain and anguish, but also hope. This is when the idea came about to create an audiobook.” The result is a powerful, sensory experience where voice and language combine to fully envelop the reader.
Blackstone Publishing marked its 30th anniversary in 2017, and the company continues to grow, innovate, and further the ascendancy of the overall audiobook business. The new publishing venture, launched in 2015, is built upon this foundation. Our goal is to publish groundbreaking books (fiction and nonfiction) by talented writers, and to forge long-term connections with readers, booksellers, librarians, and the overall literary community.