Sept 19 • Oct 17 • Nov 21 • Dec 12 (2nd Saturday) • Jan 16 • Feb 20 • Mar 16
2016 ALL-CITY CHAMPIONSHIP: Saturday April 16, location TBA
Our biggest event of the entire year is the TYPS Season Championship, coming April 2016. This year, in order to qualify to perform at the Championship, we have a new Season Points System. For every time you place in the slam, you score Season Points. The 15 poets with the highest number of points from the whole season will be invited to compete in the Season Championship in April.
|This is how you earn Season Points, 2015-2016
The Spoken Futures Staff will keep track of the Season Points System, and will have your total number of Season Points upon request at a Monthly slam. We also hope to keep a running tally here on the website. More info on that soon!
Please let us know if you have any questions!
May Slam review by special guest blogger Zack Taylor
May was the Cover Slam which means the summer has officially started! During the summer we give you a chance to break rules and poets were able to plagiarize and perform other poets works! We had poets recite the works of Megan Falley, Kendrick Lamar, and Beck Cooper!
Prior to the slam, the hosts, Eva and myself, ran a workshop about perspectives of celebrities, book characters, TV personalities, super heroes, and even alter egos to get everyone prepared for June’s Cosplay Slam.
DJ Dirtyverbs kicked off the night right with some cumbia hip hop remixes and the slam was on! We had a total of ten poets signed up with five first-timers. Eva, our host and new reigning TYPS champ, was our spotlight feature and covered poems by even yours truly!
Remember, we love first timers but we need second timers to keep coming as well! We are so pleased to have so many first timers every month but without second timers (and third timers, and fourth, and so on) TYPS wouldn’t continue grow. We need all of you!
I would like to give a big thank you to our volunteers; DJ Dirtyverbs, Araceli, Jose, Sarah, Maya, Eva, the judges, and the baristas at Bentley’s House of Coffee and Tea.
1st Alex K.
Highest Scoring First Timer:
The next summer slams:
-June 20th: Cosplay slam
-July 18th: Identity slam (we’ll cover this in the June workshop)
-August 15th: Music slam
See you soon!
In case you missed it:
The TYPS Championships was MIND-BLOWING!
Nine of Southern Arizona’s best youth poets took the stage at Gallagher Theater on April 18th in front of over 160 people. They tackled rough topics such as Ferguson, education cuts, beauty standards, having children, illnesses, and religion, all while blowing the audience out of the water!
The theater was full of snaps and cheers for two and a half hours, drawing in passers-by and welcoming them in. We also had TWO special guest poets this year— Troy Osaki from Seattle opened us up, along with our feature, Mercedez Holtry from Albuquerque! They were absolutely amazing, and we are so glad they were able to be a part of this.
Continuing the tradition from last year, we were able to give the annual Sparkplug award to long-time TYPS supporter Adela Lincona, who gave us a moving speech about letting your voice be heard through poetry and social justice. We must say it again: thank you, Adela!
This could not have been possible without so many people, including our guest judges, Marc David Pinate, Terè Fowler Chapman, Amy Briseño, Mari Herraras, and Martina Dawley. We also had so many wonderful volunteers, including Jira-soul, our guest DJ; Enrique, our scorekeeper; Zami, our score reader; José, our timekeeper; Jason, our videographer; and Derrick, our photographer. Thank you’s are also in order to our two beautiful hosts, Zack and Araceli! We are also so grateful for every poet who participated— you are the beautiful backbone of TYPS! And finally, thank you to YOU, our audience and support system. You helped make all of this possible!
Congratulations to this year’s winners!
1st place: Eva S.
2nd Place: Lydia H.
3rd Place: Louie V.
Also, congratulations to this year’s participants!
We had an awesome time at our very first summer slam on May 16th! We’ll have a review up of that soon, written by a guest blogger! Until next time…
After a successful FIFTH SEASON, the infamous Summer Slams return! Every summer we throw out the rules (well, some of them!) and switch things up with new hosts and themes for each slam. Here’s the schedule for this summer:
As always, slams are every 3rd Saturday of the month at Bentley’s House of Coffee & Tea on Speedway. Workshops start at 5pm and the slams start at 7pm and end around 9pm. Unless noted above, all other info is the same.
by Guest Blogger Eva S.!
The Tucson Youth Poetry Slam had an amazing last slam of the season! The excited poets and audience left an impression appropriate for our 5th season!
Our 5:00 PM workshop was lead by Spoken Future’s very own: Sarah Gonzales! Poets used their creative minds to create very different poems and stories on a very common topic—shoes. Personifying footwear and using satire our workshop participants used humor and wit to illustrate issues like social class and feeling left out. Also, a reminder that workshop participants do get first dibs on the slam!
Because the TYPS mic has been poppin’ lately, we had to make cuts to our sign up list in order to keep our three-round slams. Everyone in the workshop was guaranteed a spot and cuts were made to those signing up after. Another reason to go to the workshop!
Poets blew the audience away, leaving everyone’s snapping fingers sore and the word “PREACH” echoing in everyone’s ears. Our feature poet Chezale brought a totally different vibe to the mic that night! Everyone was taken back by her hip hop number, including a song from her new album “MAVMUZIK.”
The slam was definitely a wonderful way to celebrate World Poetry Day and we’d like to thank everyone involved. A huge thank you to Bentley’s for being our place to be every third Saturday. Thank you to our beautiful hosts Araceli and Apple. And as always thank you for our volunteers; DJ Jirasol, videographer, timekeeper, and scorekeeper.
Don’t forget our all-city championships are next month! We want this to be our biggest championships EVER! April 18th (third Saturday) from 1:00 PM to 4:00 PM at the Gallagher Theatre at the University of Arizona Student Union (1303 E. University Blvd — parking in 2nd St Garage). Check out youth and special performance by Alburquerque’s Mercedez Holtry. As always it is free! Also, if you are a poet who has slammed during the 2014 – 2015 season be sure to sign up here:
Congratulations to this month’s winners!
First Place: Mackenzie
Second Place: Itzel
Third Place: Eva
Highest scoring first timer: Alondra!
See you all at the championships!
Saturday, April 18th 2015
University of Arizona Student Union Memorial Center
1303 E University Blvd, Tucson, AZ 85719
Southern Arizona’s most engaging youth poets return to the big stage for the 2015 Tucson Youth Poetry Slam Championship on Saturday, April 18th at 1:00pm at the University of Arizona’s Gallagher Theater. Now in its fifth year, the Championship is a thrilling showcase of youth voice and is the largest spoken word contest of its kind in Tucson. This event is free to attend and will also feature a special performance by poet Mercedez Holtry of Albuquerque, NM. Who will be Tucson’s 2015 All-City Champion? Come find out! Details are at www.TucsonYouthPoetrySlam.org
Poet registration opens 3/21 and closes 4/12 10:00pm. Registration is open to all poets who have competed in a TYPS Monthly during the 2014-2015 season.
The Tucson Youth Poetry Slam is a program of Spoken Futures, Inc.
Made possible in part by UA Common Ground Alliance, the UA Crossroads Collaborative, Casa Libre en la Solana, Bentley’s House of Coffee and Tea, UA Poetry Center, ASUA Diversity and broad community support.
Poets: we want you to perform in the Championship!
REGISTRATION NOW OPEN!
Poets interested in competing in the 2015 Tucson Youth Poetry Slam Championship are asked to have competed in at least one regular monthly slam this season. If that’s you, please:
You will receive an email once your slot in the Championship is confirmed.
Registration DEADLINE: Wed. 4/12 10pm
1. Eva S.
2. Cristian T.
3. Nichole S.
4. Zoe K.
5. Ames S.
6. Lydia H.
7. Lucy B.
8. Louie V.
9. Raianna M.
10. Mackenzie S.
11. Itzel P.
12. Valerie V.
13. Hayleigh R.
14. Evangeline E.
15. Paola V.
On September 21st, 2014, I received an anonymous question asking if I would ever date someone who wasn’t Mexican.
Now, while stupid, it is a valid question.
Many say it can be a challenge to date someone of a different background, and doing so often results in the suppressing of one’s customs, language, etc.
So, my answer to you, wonderful anonymous person of the internet, is yes, because we are all the same.
Well, no, technically we’re not the same at all.
We’re just not built the same and with the intent to do the same things.
For example, a brown boy may struggle to reach the top shelf, similar to how a white boy probably can’t get down to a cumbia.
I pay attention to the differences in customs and colors because they’re too special to ignore.
But instead of letting those differences divide us, let them bring us together.
Get to know each other. Get a little interesting.
If we date,
I want you to tell me about your culture, baby. Let’s talk about what kind of food your mom makes, baby.
I love it when you talk to me about your grandparents, baby.
Tell me your story, baby, whether your family came here 300 years ago or 5 years ago or if they were here this whole time.
The point is that you’re here
And this is now, and
When it gets down to business, I don’t care whether your skin is brown or black or red or yellow or white.
I’ll look you in the eyes and love it, regardless of color.
And tonight, baby, I wanna dig my nails deep into your roots. I wanna talk all night long. So much so that by the next day, I’ll have had lost my voice. I love that big background of yours. And I want you to turn me into an expert.
Use that mouth to teach me your language
Use those hips to show me your moves
Use those hands to cook your favorite meals for me
Indulge me in your customs and your culture and the rights and the wrongs because I would rather learn from you than from some fucking textbook.
Tell me about God and what role he plays in your life.
Tell me why you wear your clothes that way or why you eat your meals that way.
I want you to be proud of your culture
Celebrate the victories your people made
Learn from the mistakes your people made
Fill in the blanks
Connect the dots
Teach me what you know and let’s learn what you don’t together
Baby just please, don’t strain yourself making that accent.
Don’t tuck your faith underneath your shirt
Don’t hide behind layers of neutral-colored shame and regret
Peel back the layers, share your knowledge
Because dating someone should never mean abolishing your roots.
We at TYPS rang in the new year by BREAKING EVEN MORE RECORDS! With a whopping twenty-six poets on the mic (four of which were teachers!), and a crowd that went all the way out the door of Bentley’s, this was a slam you had to see to believe!
The night started off at 5:00 PM with a workshop by teacher and long-time TYPS supporter Teresa Driver. Teresa had our participating poets draw a map of a place where something important occurred, then gave them a list of prompts, like “Write about the most blood you’ve ever seen within your map” or “Write about a time you screamed”. As the workshop went on, more poets trickled in, and by 6:00 PM, Bentley’s was packed!
Our record-breaking first annual Teacher Slam was a huge success! Teachers and youth went hand-in-hand with their poetry, tackling topics such as being revolutionary, cancer, grandmothers, being Native American, and being an ally. We also had our incredible feature, Kai M. Green, spit absolute truth about racism, childhood trials, and losing people you love.
Because we had so many poets on the mic (let’s say it again: TWENTY-SIX!), there ended up only being ONE round for the entire slam. But no matter what, it was still a night of fire. Thank you to Bentley’s for being the very best venue a slam could ask for. Thank you to our spectacular co-hosts, Araceli and Enrique. Thank you to our volunteer videographer, timekeeper and scorekeeper. Thank you to our special guest, DJ Dirtyverbs, for spinning some amazing jams! Thank you to our spotlight poet, Louie V., for a phenomenal poem to close out a phenomenal night (which you can see here). And of course, thank you to the poets and the audience! This would never, ever be possible without you!
Congratulations to this month’s winners!
First annual teacher slam:
See you all on February 21st! Same time, same place, more information to come. In the meantime, check out these videos from our feature and our winner!