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February 2008

Release Date: February 13, 2008

ASU Writers Conference to Feature Luis Valdez and Elmer Kelton

Angelo State University will host award-winning playwright and author Luis Valdez as the keynote speaker at the 12th Annual ASU Writers Conference in Honor of Elmer Kelton Feb. 21-22.

Valdez will be joined on the program by San Angelo western novelist and conference namesake Elmer Kelton and 20 other authors. All events are open free to the public in the C.J. Davidson Conference Center in the Houston Harte University Center.

Sessions featuring Valdez will begin at 3:30 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 21, and at 7 p.m. Friday, Feb. 22. Kelton will speak at 7 p.m. Feb. 21, followed by a reception and book signing. The other writers will present their works in various sessions throughout the program. A selection of works by Valdez, Kelton and several of the other writers will be available in the ASU Bookstore.

Conference headliner Valdez is regarded as one of the most important and influential playwrights living today. He founded the internationally renowned and Obie Award-winning theater company El Teatro Campesino (The Farm Workers’ Theater) in 1965 and penned the award-winning play “Zoot Suit.”

He also wrote the screenplays for Hollywood movies “La Bamba,” starring Lou Diamond Phillips; “Cisco Kid,” starring Jimmy Smits and Cheech Marin; and “Corridos: Tales of Passion and Revolutions,” starring Linda Ronstadt. His latest anthology, “Mummified and Other Plays,” was recently published by Arte Publico Press.

The conference is hosted by the ASU English Department and sponsored by the university. It is funded in part by College Bookstores of America, the ASU Alumni Association, the College of Liberal and Fine Arts, the English Department, and Guy and Eva Choate.

For more information, contact Dr. Mary Ellen Hartje at 942-2269, Ext. 230, or visit the conference web site at httb://www.angelo.edu/dept/english/writersconference.html.