Spoken word events in Toronto, July 2013
Spoken word events worth knowing about in Toronto, July 2013
Waving the flag proudly for the spoken word community in Toronto has never been easier, thanks to the number and quality of the shows that have been happening in town as of late. This month is no exception, as the entertainment value remains high for those Torontonians who seek it from performance poetry. You can get a taste of what's in store during the heat of this year's summer by reading on.
TORONTO POETRY PROJECT PRESENTS CANADA DAY SLAM FT. JEM ROLLS / JULY 1 / 1PM / HARBOURFRONT CENTRE / FREE
The second of two days of poetry showcase and slam, this event pits the 2013 Toronto Poetry Slam Team — Optimus Rhyme, Kliggy, IF, Philosofly and David Delisca — against all comers in a "friendly" poetry slam. The event features Jem Rolls, a UK-based spoken word artist who has become a stalwart of the Canadian Fringe circuit.
WORDSPELL SPOKEN WORD / JULY 3 / 8:30PM / FREE TIMES CAFE / $6
The ladies of WordSpell are hosting a Pride special, featuring the poetry of Krystle Mullin and Barbara Erochina. It's the final show of their successful first season, hosted by longtime Toronto spoken word artist Tanya Neumeyer. The women who bless the mic are going to light it up!
THE STRICTLY ROOTS VARIETY SHOW / JULY 4 / 8:30PM / LULA LOUNGE / $20 ADV-$25 DOOR
Dwayne Morgan presents the third of a series of five poetry events at the Lula Lounge over the course of this summer. The recently inducted member of the Scarborough Walk of Fame brings together an eclectic line-up of artists, providing a mixed bag of artistic goodies you can't wait to dive into to find the gems.
SLAMTARIO SPOKEN WORD FESTIVAL / JULY 12-13 / MEASURE & TRANZAC / $10-$25
The top practitioners in poetry slam convene in Toronto for two days of workshops, panel discussions, open mic and, centrally, the second annual Ontario slam championships. On Friday night, the preliminary slams go down at Measure beginning at 7pm, with an afterparty by DJ Soul Child. Saturday brings a daytime program of activities at neighbouring Tranzac starting at 1pm, with the championship finals featuring Whitney "Witness" Greenaway from NYC at Measure at 8pm. The festival-ending afterparty will feature spins by DJ Manifest. Events are: Friday $10 ($5 afterparty only after 11pm), Saturday daytime PWYC and Saturday evening $20 ($10 afterparty only after 11pm). Fest passes are $25.
SOUTHWESTERN ONTARIO SPOKEN WORD CIRCUIT PRESENTS ANDRE PREFONTAINE / JULY 17, 18 & 24
The SOSWC is a consortium of spoken word groups that stage monthly spoken word events in London, Guelph, Hamilton, Burlington, Toronto and York Region. Thanks to the Canada Council for the Arts, they will bring a high-profile artist each month to perform at the venues on the circuit. This month, Canadian Underground Indies champ Andre Prefontaine from Calgary tours the circuit. He features at the Bill Brown's 1-2-3 Slam Poetry X-Change FUNraiser (July 17), Burlington Slam Project (July 18) and YorkSlam in Richmond Hill (July 24).
FREE YOUR VOICE (UNITY FESTIVAL) / JULY 21 / 2PM / DANIELS SPECTRUM / $5 ADV-$10 DOOR; YOUTH 18 & UNDER FREE AT THE DOOR WITH ID
The annual UNITY Charity festival takes over Toronto with talented artists young and old showing the city what they can do as they set their talents free. To conclude the festivities, young people will have the chance to share their voices in emceeing and spoken word. Free Your Voice is presented in partnership with R.I.S.E. Poetry and features a performance by Queen Godis.
TEN: A SPOKEN WORD / HIP-HOP CONCERT / JULY 25 / 10PM / CLINTON'S / $20 ADV-$25 DOOR
Greg Frankson, a.k.a. Ritallin (a.k.a. the author of this article), celebrates a decade of spoken word performance with this all-star lineup of top-notch talent. With former world slam champion Ian Keteku, the crew of Missing LinX and Juno Award winning producer and performer Kinnie Starr, there is no doubt that the show will make you dance the night away.
OTHER SHOWS AND EVENTS
Have a spoken word event coming up that you'd like us to plug? Submit your own listing to the blogTO events calendar.
Photo of Dwayne Morgan
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