Another record breaker! More poets attended the workshop with Christopher Lane from Sedona than any previous TYPS workshop. Over 20 were there. Then at TYPS Committee we discussed youth beginning to host upcoming slams (Luis Borboa hosts with Maya Asher on 5/21, holla!), the First Annual TYPS Championship (number of poets allowed in, sign-up process; separate post on that in the coming days), and more.

Over 10 of the 19 total poets were slamming for the first time, but they brought the heat! One of them, Amber Degard (Desert View HS) took second in the competition, not easy for a rookie! The winner, Enrique Garcia, began competing just last month. The lone slammer from Pueblo this month is also a participant in Nuestra Voz, an initiative of the YWCA Tucson’s Racial Justice Program. Garcia came big in the first round, then read a group poem with fellow NV student Adriana Garcia before the featured poets’ set. Congratulations, to Enrique, Amber and Clarissa Holguin from Tucson Magnet HS! You all rocked it, as did so many that night.

Our features were Jacob Seeman and Kaia Placa of the Young Voices Be Heard program in Sedona, Arizona. Long-time program participants and writers in their own right, Jacob and Kaia threw down a set that was both nuanced and visceral, very impressed in whole. Hope to see you all again soon! Thanks to Christopher Lane for his inspiring workshop and work in coordinating YVBH.

Another cool thing happened this time: the TYPS community continued to coalesce, embracing both new first-time slammers and colleagues from other schools. This is the most important part of the TYPS. An open community is a powerful community.

Desert View HS had a very strong showing this TYPS. A lot of credit for this goes to the poetry club that students formed after the TYPS Spark event at the school in March. Organized by teacher and OLE Board Member Taylor Johnson, the event offered a mix of performances and workshops by poet and TYPS coordinator Logan Phillips. Their club is so cool, I’m not sure if I am even to mention the name of it! Ask the TYPS poets from DVHS about it. They’re onto something.

Thanks to Maya Asher, Taylor Johnson and Teresa Dawn Driver for volunteering and to Ashley Antone and Trevor Lawrence for working the video.

That was the 2010-2011 season! Next up, the FIRST ANNUAL TYPS CHAMPIONSHIP!

    Winners, April 2011:

  1. Enrique Garcia (Desert View HS) 28.4
  2. Amber Degard (Desert View HS) 27.9
  3. Clarissa Holguin (Tucson Magnet HS) 27.8

    Also competing:

  • Josh Williams (Desert View HS)
  • Celida Balbastro (DVHS)
  • Luis Borboa (DVHS)
  • Sadie Bonn (DVHS)
  • Cynthia Altamirano (DVHS)
  • Sammy Dominguez (Tucson High Magnet School)
  • Jonny Williams (THMS)
  • Caitlynn Weymann (THMS)
  • Amber Hough (DVHS)
  • Francisco Mejia (THMS)
  • Sadiya Buta (DVHS)
  • Shane Grey (Amphitheater HS)
  • Jennifer Schmidt (Sunnyside HS)
  • Sabina Prijic (University HS)
  • Sabrina Flores (Toltecalli HS)
  • Asiya Mir (THMS)

    In the slam workshop, led by Christopher Lane:

  • Sadie Bonn
  • Luis Borboa
  • Cynthia Altamirano
  • Celida Balbastro
  • Sammy Dominguez
  • Amber Hough
  • Caitlynn Wegmann
  • Enrique Garcia
  • Amber Degard
  • Francisco Mejia
  • Clarissa Holguin
  • Jonny Williams
  • Sergio Jimenez
  • Rolando Fimbres
  • Kayla Iworrigan
  • Cameron Staggers
  • Jesus Balbastro
  • Josh Williams
  • Jackie Valdez
  • Adriana Garcia