It's December and as the year is coming to a close, I'm happy to have just received an email from Intermedia Arts announcing the Verve grant winners for 2012 (including myself)- and it's ready, set, go time! The world can't end in 2012, I've just got too much cool stuff to do!
So, what does this mean? Six amazing spoken word poets and I get to be a part of this really cool program through Intermedia Arts to work on our craft, learn about this art style and support each other while each of us is individually working on our own project that brings art into the community in a meaningful way. I can't even say how excited and honored I am to be able to work with these poets, and with Intermedia Arts (who has been a leader in community art in Minneapolis for decades. I remember the first time I went down to that cool building in Uptown with the amazing, changing graffiti art on the walls for a show- and now I will be performing there myself at the end of this year!) It is really, by any measure, a dream come true.
My project involves performing my work (hopefully lots of new stuff) at as many different types of events as possible and documenting it for a year. I'm calling it Poetry in Action. The intention is to go out into the community and use art as a tool to make change, to contribute spoken word poetry to the various movements Minneapolis is so fortunate to have bustling here. Things I am already involved in, like the anti-war movement and Occupy, to things like community gardening and hopefully some new stuff, new places and .orgs I just haven't met yet. Frankly, I've got a lot of learning to do, but that's the point. I just need to write and perform as much as possible. So, if you hear of
any opportunities to do so-you should let me know. I'm already getting
some traction, though. The show on Oct 18th with Jared Paul went great, and I've
got plans to be a guest on a weekly radio show/podcast called The New
American Dream (just as soon as the details get worked out).
Just this week I went to a neat little open mic at Mapps Coffee Shop that was put on by the Human Rights Student Advisory Board at the U of M. It was great, all of the performers were amazing, and all of the work was LGBT and/or Human Rights related (so my stuff fit right in). It was part of a week's worth of actions and events that they are doing for Human Rights Day (Dec. 10th) and it was perfect, because I got a chance to tell them about The Anti War Committee event on Sat. for Human Rights Day. We are having a rally and a march that starts at the corner of Franklin and Nicollet and ends indoors at the coffee shops called The Nicollet, where there will be refreshments and some speeches and I will be performing my brand new piece! I'm actually supposed to be finishing writing that right now, but then I saw the email : )
So, yeah, good stuff in the works. Any and everyone who wants to should come to this thing on Sat
(here's the facebook event: http://www.facebook.com/events/520565027954255/)
And stay tuned for future performances!