Arts & Letters Live

Arts & Letters Live is a literary and performing arts series for all ages that features award-winning authors and performers of regional, national, and international acclaim. The series is recognized for its creative multidisciplinary programming—combining literature with visual arts, music, and film—and for commissioning new work from musicians, dancers, and poets, inspired by works of art in the Museum's collection and special exhibitions. The series is celebrating its 30th season in 2021.

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In order to receive the most current event and logistical details, we strongly encourage you to purchase Arts & Letters Live event tickets only via Etix, the DMA’s ticketing system. Tickets purchased through third party vendors are often more expensive and prevent us from guaranteeing the accuracy of seat assignments and sharing logistical information.

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Upcoming Events

Format: 7/24/21

Virtual Event: Yaa Gyasi

Tuesday, July 13, 7:00 p.m. CDT
In conversation with Akwete Tyehimba, Owner of Pan-African Connection
Promotional Partners: Pan-African Connection and The Dock Bookshop
Recording available through July 27
Transcendent Kingdom by Yaa Gyasithe acclaimed author of Homegoing, is a “book of blazing brilliance” (The Washington Post)an intimate and deeply layered depiction of a Ghanaian family grappling with a series of challenges while living in Alabama. It is at once a profound story about race in America and an astonishingly intimate portrait of a young woman reckoning, both spiritually and intellectually, with a legacy of painful loss. Exquisitely written, Transcendent Kingdom is a novel about faith, science, religion, and love.  

Yaa Gyasi’s debut novel, Homegoing, won the National Book Critics Circle’s John Leonard Award for best first book, the PEN/Hemingway Award for a first book of fiction, the National Book Foundation’s “5 under 35” honors for 2016, and the American Book Award. She was born in Ghanaraised in Alabama, and now resides in Brooklyn.   


Virtual Event: Marie Benedict & Victoria Christopher Murray

Tuesday, July 20, 7:00 p.m. CDT
In conversation with Dr. Carla Hayden, Librarian of Congress
Recording available through August 3
The Personal Librarian tells the remarkable story of J. P. Morgan’s personal librarian, Belle da Costa Greene, the Black American woman who was forced to hide her true identity and pass as white in order to leave a lasting legacy. Belle is an extraordinary woman, famous for her intellect, style, and wit, but she must go to great lengths to preserve her carefully crafted white identity in the racist world in which she lives.  A meticulously researched historic novel about the hidden history of the Morgan Library, The Personal Librarian has been widely praised as virtually impossible to put down.  


“An untold story that is simply amazing. It’s timely and impactful.” —Brenda Jackson, New York Times bestselling author of Follow Your Heart    


Virtual Event: Charlotte McConaghy

Wednesday, August 4, 7:00 p.m. CDT
Promotional Partner: Trinity River Audubon Center
Recording will be available through August 18
Australian author Charlotte McConaghy’s suspenseful, artfully rendered novels celebrate the beauty and resilience of humans and animals as they adapt to a changing world.
The instant bestseller Migrations features researcher Franny Stone who arrives in Greenland with the singular purpose of following the last Arctic terns in the world on what might be their final migration to Antarctica. When her history begins to unspool―a passionate love affair, an absent family, a devastating crime―it becomes clear that she is chasing more than just the birds.
McConaghy’s Once There Were Wolves is a pulse-pounding novel about a biologist charged with reintroducing 14 wolves to the Scottish Highlands in order to rewild the landscape and bring the forest back to life. Fueled by her love of nature, McConaghy crafts a strong lead character in Inti Flynn, who grapples with the harm she has witnessed humans inflict on both the wild and on each other.  

Live Event: Richard Blanco

Wednesday, September 8, 7:30 p.m.
Promotional Partner: Latino Cultural Center
All purchased tickets have been transferred to the rescheduled date.
Selected by President Obama as the fifth inaugural poet in US history, Richard Blanco is the first Latino, immigrant, and gay person to serve in such a role. Blanco was born in Madrid to Cuban exile parents and raised in Miami, and the negotiation of cultural identity characterizes his award-winning poetry. His latest book of poems, How to Love a Country, both interrogates the American narrative, past and present, and celebrates the still unkept promise of its ideals. In celebration of the DMA’s exhibition My|gration in the Center for Creative Connections, Blanco will read his specially commissioned poem inspired by works of art in the DMA's collection. 




Rescheduled: David Sedaris

Tuesday, April 26, 2022, 7:30 p.m.
Location: McFarlin Auditorium, Southern Methodist University
In partnership with KERA

All purchased tickets have been transferred to the NEW rescheduled 2022 date.


One of America’s pre-eminent humor writers, David Sedaris returns to Dallas for the eleventh consecutive year to read new and unpublished material. He is the master of satire and one of today’s most observant writers addressing the human condition. Beloved for his personal essays and short stories, Sedaris is the author of Me Talk Pretty One DayLet’s Explore Diabetes with Owls and Theft By Finding: Diaries (1977-2002), among many others. Calypso, his latest collection of essays, is a New York Times bestseller. Sedaris’s original audio pieces can often be heard on the public radio show This American Life.


Rescheduled: Yotam Ottolenghi

Tuesday, May 3, 2022, 7:30 p.m.

Location: Eisemann Center, Hill Performance Hall 

In conversation with Chad Houser, Cafe Momentum Founder/CEO/Executive Chef 

All purchased tickets have been transferred to the NEW rescheduled 2022 date.

For renowned chef and New York Times bestselling cookbook author Yotam Ottolenghi, food is about more than what we eat. It is about joy, pleasure, and surprise. It is about a sense of place, home, and community. In his latest cookbook, Flavor, this international culinary influencer reveals how flavor is created and amplified through more than 100 innovative, delicious plant-based recipes; he also oversees the photography himself. His revolutionary approach to vegetable cooking showcases low-effort, high-impact dishes designed for the relaxed cook. Based in London, Ottolenghi spends much of his time creating and testing recipes for his weekly column in the Guardian and his monthly column in the New York Times. Six London restaurants, nine bestselling cookbooks, and millions of devotees of the “Ottolenghi effect” have transformed the Israeli-British chef into the leader of a culinary juggernaut.