Andrew Conte: Death of the Daily News

Alphabet City 40 W. North Avenue, Pittsburgh, PA

What happens when a town loses its local newspaper?
In Death of the Daily News, author Andrew Conte examines the closure of McKeesport's The Daily News, grapples with the local news deserts that leave citizens with little access to reliable local journalism, and how communities can come together to forge a path forward when their local newspapers shutter.

Actors Talk August Presented by August Wilson House: Russell Hornsby

City of Asylum @ Home

Along with an active career on film and TV, Russell Hornsby has starred in five August Wilson plays, most notably in Denzel Washington’s “Fences” (both on Broadway and on film) and in the title role in “King Hedley II” at the Signature Theatre. His compelling interview is one of the most thoughtful, insightful in the 33 sessions of the Actors Talk August series. Register to see it (just your zip code required) and send the link to August Wilson fans among your friends!

Off Minor Jazz Series: Thelonious Monk

Alphabet City 40 W. North Avenue, Pittsburgh, PA

The Monktet celebrates Thelonious!
Thelonious Sphere Monk is one of America’s most iconic and original artists. To celebrate his birthday (October 10th), Pittsburgh musicians Thomas Wendt and David Throckmorton have assembled a new quintet—the Monktet—to perform some Monk. With varying instrumentation between tunes, the group shares their unique take on Monk’s extensive catalog, playing with well-known classics as well as showcasing obscure gems.

In-Dialogue series Presented by the #notwhite Collective

City of Asylum @ Home

Celebrating and recognizing arts and cultural workers, especially those who tend to be under the radar and forgotten about, the #notwhite collective has featured speakers from southwestern PA as well as national leaders in the arts.
October’s conversation features Shey Rivera.
The #notwhite collective is a group of thirteen women artists whose mission is to use non-individualist, multi-disciplinary art to make our stories visible as we relate, connect, and belong to the global majority.

Queer Nature Presented by Autumn House Press

Alphabet City 40 W. North Avenue, Pittsburgh, PA

Queer Nature: A Poetry Anthology amplifies and centers LGBTQIA+ voices and perspectives in a collection of contemporary nature poetry. Showcasing over two hundred queer writers from the nineteenth century to today, Queer Nature offers a new context for and expands upon the canon of nature poetry while also offering new lenses through which to view queerness and the natural world.
Artists from the collection join us live at City of Asylum as well as virtually from their homes across the country. 

Mark Rylance: Live at Alphabet City

Alphabet City 40 W. North Avenue, Pittsburgh, PA

In-person tickets for this program are SOLD OUT. You can still join us online. 

Sir Mark Rylance is one of the most decorated stage and screen actors in the world, and a favorite of City of Asylum cofounders Henry Reese and Diane Samuels. Mark visits the Alphabet City stage to read selections from City of Asylum writers-in-residence Horacio Castellanos Moya, Huang Xiang, Rama, Osama Alomar, and Tuhin Das—along with one of Rylance's favorite poets Robert Bly.
This is an incredibly special and unique afternoon, just for the City of Asylum community, and we hope you'll join us.

World Music Series: Taak Ensemble

Alphabet City 40 W. North Avenue, Pittsburgh, PA

To celebrate National Hafez Day (October 12th in Iran), Taak Ensemble pays homage to this legendary 14th-century poet, weaving his poetry into their performance of classical and folk Persian music. 
Rooted in Persian music, history, and poetry, Taak Ensemble creates their own unique sound using vocals, tombak (Perisan goblet drum), santur (Persian dulcimer), and tar (Persian lute). Having performed at numerous music festivals, universities, and cultural institutions around the country, this concert marks Taak’s debut at City of Asylum.

Story Club PGH Story Slam: Bump in the Night

Alphabet City 40 W. North Avenue, Pittsburgh, PA

In person tickets are SOLD OUT. You can still join us via livestream.
Join City of Asylum and Story Club Pittsburgh for a monthly nonfiction storytelling series mixing the spontaneity of an open mic with the experience of live theater. Organized and hosted by the former producers of The Moth Pittsburgh. 
Every show includes volunteer storytellers and featured performers, all taking the stage to share stories based on a theme. October’s theme: Bump in the Night.

Jill Bialosky & Lynn Steger Strong

City of Asylum @ Home

What would life be without pondering ambition, art, family, and desire? Novelists Jill Bialosky and Lynn Steger Strong explore these themes and more in their latest respective novels, The Deceptions and Flight.

Happy Together Presented by ReelQ Film Festival

Alphabet City 40 W. North Avenue, Pittsburgh, PA

One of the most searing romances of the 1990s, Wong Kar Wai’s emotionally raw, lushly stylized portrait of a relationship in breakdown casts Hong Kong superstars Tony Leung Chiu Wai and Leslie Cheung Kwok Wing as a couple traveling through Argentina and locked in a turbulent cycle of infatuation and destructive jealousy as they break up, make up, and fall apart again and again.

Freedom To Create Gala featuring Orhan Pamuk

Alphabet City 40 W. North Avenue, Pittsburgh, PA

Each year we gather at Alphabet City to honor an international writer or artist who has overcome efforts to limit their creative freedom. This year’s honoree is Nobel Prize winner Orhan Pamuk.

Freedom to Create Keynote with Orhan Pamuk

Alphabet City 40 W. North Avenue, Pittsburgh, PA

Each year we gather at Alphabet City to honor an international writer or artist who has overcome efforts to limit their creative freedom. This year we honor Turkish novelist Orhan Pamuk, the recipient of the 2006 Nobel Prize in Literature.
An advocate for freedom of expression, Mr. Pamuk has experienced first-hand the dangers to writers. In 2021, he was investigated by the Turkish state for “insulting” the founder of modern Turkey and ridiculing the Turkish flag in his new novel, Nights of Plague. Mr. Pamuk faced similar claims before. In 2005, he was indicted for “insulting Turkishness” after stating that “thirty-thousand Kurds and one million Armenians were killed in these lands.”

Welcome to the City of Asylum website!

Click on "Programs" in the main menu to see our upcoming programs. Explore our other pages to learn more about City of Asylum's mission, exiled writer- and artist-in-residency program, and our special projects.

Sign up for our emails to keep up with important news and program announcements:

You have successfully subscribed to the newsletter

There was an error while trying to send your request. Please try again.

City of Asylum will use the information you provide on this form to be in touch with you and to provide updates and marketing.