A New Life by AccidentTwo Wesleyan alumni performed May 12 for President Obama, his family, and others at the White House at an event titled “An Evening of Poetry, Music and the Spoken Word.” Ayelet Waldman ’86 and her husband, Michael Chabon, both writers, were among the speakers. An NPR story about the event included Waldman discussing the power of the written word: “To harness the power of language you have to be able to put yourself in the position of the person you are speaking to—to imagine what they are thinking, what they’re feeling. That’s hard.”


Also at the White House was Lin-Manuel Miranda ’02, creator of the award-winning Broadway show In The Heights. In her blog, Waldman says he won over the audience “with a hip hop song about Alexander Hamilton, as sung by Aaron Burr.” She credited Miranda with being “one of those performers who comes along every once in a rare while who’s just got magic about him.”


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