Students from 20 secondary schools will compete this Friday, 4th March, for a place in the finals of this year’s Courts Bocas Speak Out Intercol.

Only 12 competitors will go through to the final next week Friday, 11th March. The winner will be the Courts Bocas 2016 Secondary Schools Spoken Word champion.

The exciting championship comes after a three-part nationwide touring season of workshops, performance and competitions, sponsored by COURTS, that started last September and has involved over 25,000 secondary school children in over 50 schools.

The students have been exposed to this popular style of self-expression through visiting performance poets of the 2Cents Movement as part of an on-going Bocas Lit Fest project to help young people acquire personal developmental and creative language skills that contribute to realizing their overall human potential.

“We are trying to engender an appreciation of all forms of self-expression through the written and spoken words, among people of all ages. And people come to realise that they can have great fun doing it”, says Marina Salandy-Brown, founder of Trinidad and Tobago’s literary festival the NGC Bocas Lit Fest which takes place 27 April – 1 May and is now in its sixth year.

Nicole Loney Mills, speaking on behalf of Courts, sponsors of the project for the last three years asserts, “We believe in supporting the work of Bocas and the dynamic young poets of the 2 Cents Movement who are fine exponents of this genre of performance that allows young people to articulate their thoughts creatively.”

“The arts have great power to heal and shape”, adds Bocas Youth Outreach Coordinator and founder of the Two Cents Movement Jean Claude Cournand, “We are very excited that, working with Bocas, we have initiated projects to build youth engagement. The objective is to see that translate into all areas of young people’s lives.”

Both semi finals and finals are open to the public and free.

Semis: 9-11am & 12.30-2.30pm, Friday 4 March.

Finals: 10am-12pm, Friday 11 March.

Venue: Daaga Hall, UWI, St. Augustine.

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