A record-breaking ninety artists auditioned to be part of the VERSES Bocas Poetry Slam, a national spoken word competition sponsored by First Citizens. After only 3 years, this competition has changed the spoken word landscape by rejuvenating the artform and exposing new talents, like that of 2013 Poetry Slam winner Crystal Skeete whose performance of her piece “Maxi Man Tracking School Gyal” went viral locally.
Started on the University of the Southern Caribbean’s campus in 2012 by a group of driven, socially conscious young artistes known as the 2 Cents Movement, the support of the Bocas Lit Fest and sponsorship from First Citizens has seen this event grow into a national showdown between the best local spoken word artists, competing for over TT$18,000 in prizes.
This Saturday 15th March is the first semi-final at UWI Daaga Auditorium from 7:00pm – 9:00 pm. The following Saturday 22nd March is the second semi-finals. Pay at the door $75. Limited seats are available, so get there early! See the flier below for details.
The finals of the VERSES Bocas Poetry Slam will take place on Sunday 27 April 2014, as the grand finale of the 2014 NGC Bocas Lit Fest
What is the 2 Cents Movement?
A youth-led arts non-profit organisation focused on engaging youth in contemporary social issues. Born out of concern for the increasing apathy among the young, the ultimate aim of the 2 Cents Movement is to enhance the way youth think, speak, care and act in the personal and public spheres; make it cool to be conscious; develop change agents. Before becoming the 2 Cents Movement in 2012, the group was originally a university debating society. Projects initiated by the 2 Cents Movement to date include SWRD 101 (a 12 week spoken word course) and 2 Cents for Change (video productions featuring artistes addressing issues, 143,000 views on YouTube).
Projects with the Bocas Lit Fest include VERSES Bocas Poetry Slam (a national spoken word poetry competition sponsored by First Citizens), U.WE Speak, USC Speak and Courts Bocas Speak Out Secondary Schools Tour.