For Release: Immediately
Department of External Affairs
Free Library of Philadelphia
1901 Vine Street
Philadelphia, PA 19103-1189
(215) 567-7710
FAX (215) 567-7850
Contact: Communications and Development
For Release: Immediately
Contact: Communications and Development


20th & Vine will feature behind-the-scenes interviews with visiting authors

PHILADELPHIA, February 21, 2017—The Free Library of Philadelphia Author Events program is pleased to announce the debut of 20th & Vine, a new behind-the-scenes interview series featuring backstage conversations with authors from its season lineup. Created as an answer to those questioning what an author is “really like,” these short videos distill the essence of the Library’s renowned Author Events program in a unique new format.

While in the green room getting ready for their main conversation in Parkway Central Library’s Montgomery Auditorium, visiting authors respond to questions, in conversation with Author Events Associate Producer and Director Laura Kovacs. The web series features conversations with George Saunders, Alain de Botton, Angela Duckworth, Chuck Klosterman, Emma Donoghue, Ian McEwan, Jeffrey Toobin, Jonathan Safran Foer, Juan Williams, Lesley Stahl, Louise Erdrich, Mary Roach, Moby, and Terry McMillan, as well as with the Free Library’s own President and Director Siobhan A. Reardon.

“This show is such a lovely complement to our robust Author Events program,” says Reardon. “The series will draw attention and visitors to the Free Library and promote a lifetime love of reading by creating a personal connection between author and reader.”

These conversations will be free and available online. Currently, Author Events podcasts are downloaded about 45,000 times every month, and the livestream lectures are downloaded from more than 115 countries. The hope is that this shorter, unique format will enable the Author Events program to connect with an even larger audience. Since its inception in 1993, the Author Events program has grown from hosting just a handful of authors to now presenting more than 125 authors each year, in addition to organizing the Field Family Teen Author Series.

Funding for 20th & Vine comes from the Library’s Strategic Initiatives Hatching Innovation funding pool, which supports new and exciting staff-led projects, professional development opportunities, and material needs for programming and public services. Funding is awarded throughout the year to creative and forward-leaning initiatives that meet the objectives of the Library’s strategic plan. Staff is encouraged to think of novel, experimental ideas that can serve the public in new ways.

To view the first episodes of the series, visit For more information about the Author Event Series, visit, call 215-567-4341 or email

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The Free Library of Philadelphia system, with 54 locations and the Rosenbach, advances literacy, guides learning, and inspires curiosity with millions of digital and physical materials; 25,000 yearly programs and workshops; free public computers and extensive Wi-Fi, including neighborhood Hotspots; and rich special collections, including  those at Parkway Central Library and at the Rosenbach. With more than 6 million in-person visits and millions more online annually, the Free Library and the Rosenbach are among the most widely used educational and cultural institutions in Philadelphia and boast a worldwide impact.


Department of External Affairs, Free Library of Philadelphia, 1901 Vine Street, Philadelphia, PA 19103-1189
(215) 567-7710, FAX (215) 567-7850