Author Gregory Maguire, whose novel “Wicked” inspired a Broadway musical, will speak at 7 p.m. Tuesday, June 7, at Bagaduce Music in Blue Hill.

Word presents “Wicked” author Gregory Maguire



BLUE HILL — Gregory Maguire, author of the novel that gave rise to the blockbuster Broadway musical “Wicked,” will return to Blue Hill Tuesday, June 7, to converse with longtime friend and colleague Patricia McMahon, co-founder of Moss Wood Retreats in Brooksville.

Sponsored by Word, the Blue Hill literary arts festival, the conversation will begin at 7 p.m. in the performance hall at Bagaduce Music in Blue Hill. Audience members must pre-register at www.wordfestival.org. Masks will be required.

Maguire last appeared in Blue Hill in 2017 to help celebrate Word’s debut year. Now as then, he is in the area to lead a four-day workshop at Moss Wood, which convenes every June (COVID-19 permitting) at the Hiram Blake Camps on Cape Rosier.

Maguire and McMahon met as members of the first master’s degree class in children’s literature at Simmons College. Among other topics, they will discuss why Maguire writes for adults as well as children, as well as the meaning and importance of fantasy.

In addition to “Wicked,” the start of a series set in Oz, Maguire is the author of some three dozen books for adults and children, the most recent being the middle-grade novel “Cress Watercress,” an animal adventure published in March. Last fall, he started a second series of Oz books with “The Brides of Maracoor.” Many of his novels, regardless of audience, are inspired by classic children’s tales from “Cinderella” to “The Nutcracker.” He lives with his family in Massachusetts.

McMahon is a poet and the author of 14 books for children, best known for innovative nonfiction picture books such as “Belfast Boy” and “Listen for the Bus.” She and her family visit Brooksville annually from their home in Texas.

After two years online, Word 2022 is crossing its fingers and planning an in-person festival for Oct. 20-23, featuring evening speakers Lily King and Phuc Tran, an original commissioned play based on the work of Blue Hill native Mary Ellen Chase, poetry readings and a full complement of workshops and conversations.

The festival is funded by the Stephen and Tabitha King Foundation, the Thompson Foundation, the Anahata Foundation, the Lojo Foundation, Bar Harbor Bank & Trust and the Maine Arts Commission, an independent state agency supported by the National Endowment for the Arts, as well as other generous donors. Word’s media partner is WERU-FM. Its fiscal sponsor is Blue Hill Community Development.

Information: www.wordfestival.org or 374-5632.

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