Saturday, September 19 @ 6:00pm
Village Roadshow Theatrette, State Library of Victoria
328 Swanston St Melbourne
Has an Open Mic?
Over a series of workshops at the State Library of Victoria, facilitators and artists Abdul Hammoud, Ebony Moncrief and Sukhjit Khalsa have been collaborating with budding wordsmiths to create new poetry and spoken word pieces exploring identity and role of faith in our everyday lives which will be launched at a free performance at the State Library of Victoria’s Village Roadshow Theatrette on Saturday 19 September 2015 from 6pm-8pm featuring spoken-word and live music.
The Common Ground participants have met every Saturday to come together to craft their own spoken word poetry by exploring topics including identity, belonging, conflict, balance and peace alongside facilitators and community liaisons Ajit Singh, Zakia Baig and Amona Hassab. Each participant has brought the wealth of their experience, coming from a range of backgrounds. Participants have been introduced to new writing techniques, group discussions and performance styles. The performance on the 19th of September will feature the work the participants and artists have created over their journey together.
In addition to the performance, a selection of the pieces created during this project will also be set to soundscapes created by Melbourne-based producer Cazeaux O.S.L.O and accompanied by a video produced by Rogue Pixel to be released online in November- stay tuned!
This project is supported by the Australia Council for the Arts, Creative Victoria, City of Melbourne, State Library of Victoria, the Victorian Multicultural Commission and Uniting Through Faiths.
Abdul Hammoud is a spoken word artist based in Melbourne by way of Lebanon, a country that he is still captivates by and connects to. Abdul has performed alongside poetic giants like Luka Lesson, Ken Arkind, Anis Mojgani, Sarah Kay, Taylor Mali and Shihan. He has also managed to teach numerous writing classes and workshops for schools and various organizations. His art has taken him as close as New Zealand and as far as the United States, as well as to his beloved home country. In 2013, he became founder of The Dirty Thirty online writing platform, an ever-growing group for writers to challenge themselves every April. He is now also editor and compiler of The Dirty Thirty Anthology, a collection of poetry from the page he coordinates. Most of his work revolves around current issues including the constant state of war in the Middle East, cultural division, as well as the portrayal of masculinity. He is also a full time student and an avid purveyor of starting books but not finishing them.
Ebony MonCrief, raised in Birmingham, Alabama, is a writer, performance poet, inspirational speaker and producer of the open mic Voices in the Attic. Through words, she explores art, music, humanity, the universe and most importantly self. Her vibrant storytelling style engages, entertains and provides audiences with a honest look at the person behind the words.
Are you 16-25 years old? Do you have a passion for storytelling, rap, short stories, poetry, photography, illustration etc.? Do you want to get published and create an interactive community dialogue while you’re at it?
Then come join local storyteller Sista Zai Zanda in Yarra Libraries’ new, interactive, installation-based, community storytelling project – ‘The Poetree’
Sessions will alternate between:‘Young Creative Writers Group Workshops’ (16-25 year olds)
Join Sista Zai Zanda – storyteller, educator and radio producer for The Pan Afrikan Poets Café – as she guides the group through such themes as biography and bio-mythography, creating believable characters and relatable stories, overcoming writer’s block, self-publishing/zine-making, and more. (Dates: 09.09, 23.09, 07.10, 21.10, 04.11, 18.11)‘Open writing sessions’ (Open to all ages)
The group will write quietly for 90 minutes, followed by 30 minutes to share ideas, network and socialise. Writers can choose to respond to prompts set by The Poetree group or work on your project. There is no workshopping, so it doesn’t matter what you are writing or which language you are writing in! (Dates: 16.09, 30.09, 14.10, 28.10, 11.11, 25.11)
The Poetree is on display at Fitzroy Library for the duration of the project.
BYO writing materials and/or laptops. Wi-Fi and power available. Light refreshments served.
Yoram Symons performing ‘The Whale’ at Melbourne Spoken Word presents Bill Moran at The Provincial Hotel, Fitzroy on September 1, 2017.
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Yoram Symons is an engaging and unique voice on the Melbourne poetry scene, known for his enchanting storytelling technique. Yoram is a writer, poet and VR/AR producer in Melbourne. His performance work is a mixture of hypnosis and intensity, exploring the intersection of history, culture, technology and the personal experience.
Slam. Is this once agent in changing the way we produce and consume performance poetry still relevant?
For those who are not familiar with slam: Slam is a competition format in which poets are given a set time limit to perform their pieces and are then scored by a total of 5 randomly selected audience members, the scores usually range from 1-10 to the nearest 0.1 with the top and bottom scores being dropped in order to avoid bias, giving each poet a final score out of 30. The poet with the highest score at the end of the night wins. There are many variations on this basic format (which was first introduced by Marc Smith) employed by poetry competitions across the globe.
Slam boasts origins in the idea that the people should have a say in the type of content they are presented with. That is, that those who are the predominant consumers of performance poetry or spoken word; the audience should be the deciding party in the kind of work that is allowed recognition and reward. This has given rise to a style of poetry unofficially termed “slam poetry.”
Slam poetry is a term used to define the type of poetry, both in cadence and content, that is likely to score well at slams. A poet who presents poetry predominantly of this style may be called a slam poet. And while slam, by definition, is a format for competition, the world of slam poets and slam poetry is a rapidly growing one with poets who have attained worldwide recognition for their execution of this style of poetry. However, over time and particularly on our extensive and hugely varied poetry scene, the idea that the poetry presented in slam is of an inferior quality is becoming an increasingly held one.
That is to say, there is a specific school of thought which views slam through a lens that portrays the art that is presented on slam stages as simplistic, repetitive and lacking in any depth beyond the concise point that the artist is trying to make in the allotted time limit.