Poempalöoza celebrates the spoken word

By From page B2 | March 27, 2013


AUSTIN DALY, a recent contestant in the Poetry Out Loud competition, is ready to participate in the Barbaric Yawp on Friday, April 5 from 7 to 10 p.m. at ArtSpace, 459 Main St. in Placerville. The Barbaric Yawp is part of Poempalöoza. Courtesy photo

Poempalöoza — a series of audacious poem events

It is time to get your poem on.

April is National Poetry Month and the El Dorado Arts Council is joining cities, libraries, schools and communities across the country as it engages in poetry revels large and small.

Established by the Academy of American Poets in 1996, this month-long national poetry love-fest aims to increase the availability and visibility of poetry, poets and the United States of America’s complex and lively poetic heritage.

To promote the party the El Dorado Arts Council is presenting a full schedule of Poempalöoza events.


Poempalöoza calendar

Poem On! — Under the guidance of a professional poet-in-residence, Gold Trail School students will hone their creative writing skills through poetry. April 1 to 30.

Barbaric Yawp — A Poetry Slam Première at ArtSpace, 459 Main St. in Placerville, for poets and audience members to gather for a wild night of barbaric yawping and spoken word poetry.

Everyone is invited to come and be part of the arts council’s debut slam experience. Be prepared to dazzle the audience with your own poems or be prepared to be dazzled on Friday, April 5 from 7 to 10 p.m. Admission is $2.

Due to the often controversial, uncensored, sometimes adult content of the poetry, the arts council strongly recommends that only individuals from the ages of 15 and up participate, either as poets or audience members.

For those new to the concept of poetry slamming, it is a competitive event in which poets and spoken word artists perform their work and are judged by members of a very involved audience.

Slams are never somber. They are raucous, wild, rollicking affairs. Finger-snapping, foot stomping, hoots and hollers are par for the course.

The field is wide open — if you show up with a poem, you are eligible to perform. If your poem is memorized, you already have a leg up according to the arts council.

Though everyone who signs up has the opportunity to read in the first round, the lineup for subsequent rounds is determined by the judges’ scores.

A cash prize will be awarded to the poet with the highest judges’ score.

Barbaric Yawp will follow the basic slam rules of the Poetry Slam Inc.

Each poem must be of the poet’s own construction.

Each poet gets 3 minutes (plus a 10 second grace period) to read one poem. If the poet goes over time, points will be deducted from the total score.

The poet may not use props, costumes or musical instruments.

Of the scores the poet receives from the five judges, the high and low scores are dropped and the middle three are added together, giving the poet a total score of 0 to 30.

ElectroPoetic Coffee!  — ArtSpace, 459 Main St. in Placerville, hosts Sacramento’s hottest, hippest duo — poet NSAA and award-winning guitarist Ross Hammond — in a blow the poetry house down evening. Saturday, April 13 from 7 to 9.

Seven Days/Seven Poems — Light up and energize your brain when you log on and find the poem-of-the-day in your in-box pr find the daily poem on EDAC’s Facebook page. Sunday, April 14 to Saturday, April 20.

Poem in Your Pocket Day — The arts council rings in this national poetry “holiday” with a poem giveaway to county schools, libraries, communities and visitors. Thursday, April 18.

Poetry Lounge at ArtSpace — This is ArtSpace’s swan song evening of poetry celebrating the poetry publication and performance of the Gold Trail School poet. Tuesday, April 30 from 7 to 9 p.m.

For more details on all the events contact Moira Magneson at [email protected] or 530-295-3496.

El Dorado Arts Council

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