Thursday, April 30 @ 7:00pm
House of Bricks Gallery
40 Budd Street Collingwood
Has an Open Mic?
Speak to the host and poetry jockey Santo Cazzati
House of Bricks Spoken Word happens monthly around the end of the month. It has been going since 2012 under the stewardship of House of Bricks gallery organiser Crib Millen and the MC of the poetry gig, Poetry Jockey Santo Cazzati. Santo is the only known poetry jockey in the cosmos (insert academic footnote for verification here by authority on cosmological poetry jockeys, Amanda Anastasi). A poetry jockey is like a disc jockey in a bar or night club. Santo controls the aural environment by selecting his four feature artists and ten open mic candidates in any order that he sees fit (insert acknowledgement here to Anthony O’Sullivan, from whom the idea was stolen to then be brilliantly modified by Santo). This creates a particular atmosphere, sometimes scintillating, sometimes profound, poets being listened to in pindropping silence, or being positively heckled during their performance. The emphasis is on the way poetry comes from the voice of the poet, wafts in the air, and gently caresses the listener.
Poets at HOBSW might be very performance oriented or very literary oriented, and the two seem to happily coinhabit the space. And the space is unique in the world as probably the only poetry gig with an open roll-a-door onto the world, allowing smokers to participate without causing passive smoking danger to other participants.
Sjaak de Jong
Sjaak strayed into the world of poetry about 30 years ago from the halls dungeons and cellars of rock and roll, and was founding member of the sound-poetry chorus UQ, a very strange and edgy performance group that managed to be in existence for over 20 years. He has often worked with poets striving to create a genuine hybrid of poetry and music and continues to be the producer/convenor of a number of experimental poetry compilations “Voiceprints XX” that aim to expose local practitioners to a wider audience.
Lawrence Tobius Sampson Greene
Lawrence honed his craft while living by the skin of his teeth in Cambodia, where he spoke for his supper all up and down the bars of Otres Beach. He likes words, he likes rhythm, and likes making people laugh, so he’s not at all bothered that the poem he gets the most compliments for is the dumbest one he’s ever written.
Jeltje Fanoy has been writing, performing and editing poetry since the 1970s. Her publications include the collections “Living in Aboriginal Australia”, “Catching worms” and “Poetry Live in the House”, the collaborations of poetry and music “So Be It” and “Dreaming in English”, and the compilations CDs “Poetry for Peace” and “Heart to Heart” (Reconciliation Poetry at La Mama Poetica). She has also translated works by Netherlands poet Arjen Duinker into from Dutch into English, including her translation of “De Zon en de Wereld” (The Sun and the World). Jeltje was a convenor of poetry performances at La Mama Poetica from 2004 until 2010.
Amanda Anastasi’s poetry has been published in magazines and anthologies both locally and overseas. Amanda’s first collection 2012 and other poems was named in Ali Alizadeh’s ‘Top Ten Poetic Works of 2012’ in Overland Literary Journal. She also co-wrote Loop City, with Steve Smart and NZ composer Yvette Audain, produced by MSO’s Sarah Curro. Amanda won the 2010 and 2011 Williamstown Literary Festival’s Ada Cambridge Poetry Prize. She has since been a judge for both the Ada Cambridge Poetry Prize and the Right Now Human Rights Poetry Prize. She has performed in many spoken word events and festivals in Melbourne.
Hosted by Oliver Mol, featuring readings by Oliver Mol, Eric Yoshiaki Dando, Laura Jean McKay, Nevo Zisin, Miles Allinson and Romy Ash.
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.