Words by Benjamin Solah

Poetry gigs come and go. It’s always so exciting when a new gig comes up, in a new venue, or if we see someone taking the initiative to keep our scene chugging along by setting up their own gig. I’m in awe of some of the gigs and their organisers that have kept gigs running for so long, for their hard work and determination but also convincing venues and organisers to keep supporting spoken word when it doesn’t always seem like the most booming art form. Some gigs have survived many venue swaps, as one pub decides to shun poetry, that convince another to keep it alive.

It’s also especially sad when a gig has to wrap up. Dimitris Troaditis has been running [email protected] for the past two years, where he hosted a monthly poetry gig, inside the Atrium at Fed Square or upstairs at Beer DeLuxe, and was especially encouraging of poetry in other languages, himself writing and performing poetry in Greek. Melbourne Spoken Word was very happy to support this event, publicising it along with all of the other gigs, and doing our little bit to get people along. I hope some of you got the chance to make it along one Saturday. I had the pleasure of performing alongside some refugee poets there one Saturday afternoon, and it was always a pleasure to meet the regular open mic readers that had called this event home.

Unfortunately, Fed Square have chosen to discontinue to the event from this year and so we’ve lost this treasure. Like Australian poetry as a whole lost ABC Poetica, and everyone remembers losing The Spinning Room due to the venue being refurbished, we hope that Dimitris continues to host a new gig at a new venue when he’s ready. As one venue decides to not support poetry, we’ll find another that does and continue to find people to support it so we can keep on performing.

Benjamin Solah

Benjamin Solah

Benjamin Solah is a writer, poet, spoken word artist, activist and the Director of Melbourne Spoken Word. He grew up in Western Sydney before calling Melbourne home in 2008, where he's performed since 2010 around Melbourne's regular spoken word and poetry nights including Passionate Tongues, The Dan Poets, Voices in the Attic and House of Bricks as well as the NGV and White Night. He's released a chapbook, broken bodies, and two spoken word albums, Duel Power with Santo Cazzati and The World Doesn't Make Sense EP.
Benjamin Solah

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