HEARD of spoken word open mic collective If Walls Could Talk? These guys frequently host poetry readings at Gaslight Café & Music which see strong response from performers and audiences of Kuala Lumpur’s spoken word scene, and they also recently celebrated their one year anniversary.
But most excitingly, they’re going to be putting up their first poetry slam — think an American Idol or Battle of the Bands-style face-off for poets! If you’ve never been to a poetry slam, we insist you do: it’s one of the most exhilarating (and sometimes even sensual) competitions you can find in the performing arts scene.
Titled SLAMOKRASI, all hell is set to break loose this Saturday as ten poets each get three minutes and two rounds of performances in order to end the night with a “legit crown” on their head. These ten slammers (we swear it wasn’t us who came up with this) come from pretty diverse backgrounds too — we’re talking rap enthusiasts, teachers and even self-proclaimed pun-masters.
A quick glance at the contestants list reveal Jack Malik, a poet who loves Projek Rabak‘s Seyn Jukey very, very much as we gathered during POET VS WILD earlier in April, as well as Kimberly S’ng, a beatboxer who won Joanne Kam‘s search for Malaysia’s next female stand-up last year.
Hosted by Melizarani T. Selva, SLAMOKRASI will be judged by several established names in the literary scene on top of poetry aficionados. The likes of writer Bernice Chauly and youth educator Az’farr Baginda will be evaluating contestants alongside 13-year old James Goh, who does poetry with his homeschooling friends.
SLAMOKRASI will be held in conjunction with Publika‘s Refugee Festival, and is set to highlight voices from the community. In particular, Zulfadli Kawom an influential poet from Krueng Mane, Aceh Utara will be a featured panelist.
Last but not least, audience members who want to come and support SLAMOKRASI will be given materials to come up with picket sign and officially be part of #SkuadSokong, the cheerleading team!
So make your way to Black Box, Publika this Saturday from 5:00pm – 7:00pm to experience poetry like a badass but take note: admission is strictly free.