Toni Levis second full-length book, Watching Mother Disappear & Other Poems, arrived from Mayapple Press in 11/09. Her first book of poems, For A Dancing Bear, was published by Three Mile Harbor in 1995. Her poems have appeared in numerous journals including Prairie Schooner, Crosscurrents, Confrontation, Kansas Quarterly, California Quarterly, Apalachee Quarterly, and Manhattan Poetry Review. Her work has also been featured on the Internet on Poetry Daily and in a number of anthologies, including two editions of the Anthology of Magazine Verse & Yearbook of America Poetry.
Toni has been awarded writing residencies by the MacDowell Colony, Djerassi Resident Artists Program, VCCA/Virginia Center for the Creative Arts, Ucross Foundation, Millay Colony for the Arts, Saltonstall Foundation for the Arts, Künstlerhaus Schloss Wiepersdorf in Germany, and Konstepidemin in Gothenburg, Sweden.
A long-time singer with the New York Choral Society (www.nychoral.org), Toni has written two original opera librettos and has had a number of poems set to music by classical composers. Venture, a collaboration with composer Charles Fussell, premiered at Tanglewood in 2007. Her opera libretti include Thanksgiving, one of several collaborations with composer Paul Alan Levi, which won a Grand Prize for New Opera given by the National Music Theater Network and Seagrams. The opera, which takes a serio-comic look at hypocrisy in family relationships, has been performed at the American Music Theater Festival, Mitzi Newhouse Theatre at Lincoln Center and other venues.
Tonis second libretto, In the Beginning, is a surreal parable showing how child-rearing in western society produces a destructive civilization. Toni was also a prizewinner for the book and lyrics for Happily Ever After in a Theater for Young Audiences Competition sponsored by Theatreworks, USA.
A native New Yorker, Toni Levi lives in Manhattan. She is a graduate of Cornell University (BA in English) and the Newhouse School of Communications at Syracuse University (MA in journalism). She works as an independent fundraising consultant for non-profits, specializing in foundation and corporate grant-making.
photo by Patrick Somerville