Balcony Poets Cast Members*
is an award-winning slam poet and a major Houston poetry
organizer. Her company, Savannah Blue Productions,
produces the annual Bayou City Poetry Slam that brings
top national poets to Houston to compete at the Alley
Theatre in an event that always sells out. She herself
has competed with Houston Slam Team, a nationally
certified competitive poetry slam team that has
represented Houston in the National Poetry Slam
competitions since 2002.
honed his writing skills at University of St. Thomas and
University of Houston. He has worked with Writers in the
Schools (WITS) and Meta-Four teaching writing and
performance. He is an active performance poet, an
organizer for the Word Around Town Poetry Tour and the
author of The Metro Sutras.
Winston Derden is a poet, fiction
writer, and former journalist. His poetry publications
include New Texas, Harbinger Asylum, Texas Poetry
Calendar, Blue Collar Review, Big River Poetry Review,
Illya’s Honey, Just This, Barbaric Yawp and numerous
anthologies including Untameable City (Mutabilis
Press). He features at Houston poetry readings and
co-produces and hosts the reading/interview series
Billie Duncan (Director) has been
a professional writer and editor for over 30 years. The
author of three full-length books of poetry, she is also
published in numerous journals and anthologies. As a
poetry activist, she is a founding member of Houston Poetry
Summit, PR & Communications Director for Houston
Poetry Fest and member of the Ad Hoc Committee for the
Future of Public Poetry. Her new chapbook, Requiem
for the Plastic Clown, will be published in spring
Kirsten Heller is new to the
poetry scene, an observer who puts her musings to paper.
Absurdly curious about everything with a hunger for
knowledge, she is learning the finer points of the
craft. Her first taste of performing her poetry in
public was fall of 2016 at First Friday's open mic.
Chris Wise is a poet, novelist
and veteran of the US Army. He has been published in
various poetry anthologies and literary magazines, such
as Nerve Cowboy, Blue Collar Review and Road
Not Taken. He has been a featured author in
Cowboys and Indians Magazine and was a featured poet
in Huffington Post’s Video Reading Series. He
serves on committees of several organizations that
promote poetry throughout the Houston area, and his
poetry collection Thirsty Earth will be published
spring 2017 (Weasel Press). He also writes for and hosts
the internet TV show The Crawl on kh-tv.com about
Texas wineries, distilleries and breweries.
has written for a diverse set of ensembles, ranging from
string quartet to contrabassoon solo to amplified
rock-and-roll instruments. He has won numerous awards
and was a finalist for the 2013 ASCAP Morton Gould Young
Composer Awards. He also won the Arthur Gottschalk Prize
at Rice University.
Teresa Mauney is an accomplished musician, performer, songwriter and
composer. She studied at Julliard and has toured Europe,
played at the White House and for the Queen of England.
Her main instruments are piano, guitar and cello, and
she is adept at improvisational and extemporaneous
Tex Allen Tex Allen is a
world-renowned composer, arranger, trumpeter and
Originally from Houston, Tex has spent most of his life
in New York City and touring the world. He has returned
to Houston for his current project, "American
Folklorical," which tells the tale of America and the
evolution of diverse cultures merging to create the
indigenous American musical fabric that is
jazz and rhythm and blues.
Tuba Sozudogru is
a painter and muralist. Her work has appeared in
numerous shows. Her first art collaboration with poets
(several of whom are current members of The Balcony
Poets) was in the fall of 2014 when she provided art as a backdrop
for the 100 Thousand Poets for Change event at 14 Pews.
She has been part of every show since then, creating
paintings inspired by the poetry in the shows.
*Not all members perform at every event.