Annual Attleboro Arts Museum Poetry Slam: Thursday, May 28, 2015

Host Simone Beaubien introduces the next poet at the 2010 Attleboro Arts Museum Slam. Photo by Artie Moffa.

Host Simone Beaubien introduces the next poet at the 2010 Attleboro Arts Museum Slam. Photo by Artie Moffa.

Thursday, May 28, 2014
86 Park St., Attleboro, MA
sign-ups at 6:30, open mic at 7:00, slam at 8:00
FREE show for all ages
details at Attleboro Arts Museum website

The Boston Poetry Slam has presented a free poetry slam in conjunction with the Attleboro Arts Museum annually since 2007! This year’s special event will feature the Boston Poetry Slam Team, the Providence Poetry Slam Team, the Seven Hills Slam from Worcester, and an open mic featuring YOU, all hosted by BPS SlamMaster Simone Beaubien. As always, the show is held in the main room of the Museum at 86 Park St. in Attleboro, and the event is free of charge.

This year’s event will differ from past presentations: an open mic for members of the Attleboro community and beyond will kick off the night. After the open mic, teams from the Boston Poetry Slam, the Providence Poetry Slam, and the Seven Hills Slam will go head-to-head-to-head in a performance poetry exhibition! These three freshly selected teams will be shaking out their metaphors in preparation for their trip to the National Poetry Slam in Oakland, California this August.

The Attleboro Arts Museum is located at 86 Park St. in Attleboro, Mass., just a short walk from the Attleboro stop on the Providence/Boston line of the Commuter Rail. Signups for the open mic begin at 6:30pm, with the open mic starting at 7:00. A poetry slam featuring teams from Boston, Providence, and Worcester will begin at the end of the open mic, around 8:00. The show is all ages and admission is free.

Cantab Recap for Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Last night at the Cantab, we were pleased to welcome back the slam’s original doorman, Ron Goba, for a much-anticipated feature. A long-ago mainstay of the door and the open mic, and now a regular bi-annual feature, Ron has never yet let us down: he brought us a complex, sound-dense, ten-part journey, filling his entire feature time with this singular poem. We are so proud to have hosted this intense and unique show.

After a good long break to enjoy the presence of our veteran feature, a slam packed with rookies hit the stage. Although one-time Mill City team member Nathan Comstock put forth a valiant effort to reach the final round, it was first-timer Rachel Dunkel who took the big win and the big $10. Congratulations to Rachel, our first open slam winner to qualify to try out for the 2016 Boston Poetry Slam Team!

TONIGHT: we are pleased to announce that the 2015 Boston Poetry Slam Team (with guest poet Zeke Russell) will perform at the Attleboro Art Museum in a head-to-head-to-head team slam with Providence and Worcester! This might actually be the very first NorthBEAST team slam anywhere in New England this year, so head down to cheer on (or heckle) your favorites: the lovely one-room museum is easily accessed from the Attleboro stop of the Boston/Providence Commuter Rail.

Next week: get in line early for NEA Fellow, National Book Award judge, and, yes poetry slam veteran Jeffrey McDaniel! He’ll be bringing copies of very his latest book, Chapel of Inadvertent Joy, which you can purchase to wave triumphantly during the third act of the show: our second open poetry slam of the series.

Tips from the Bar: Dawn of the Day of the Night of the Son of the Sequel

Remake a poem. Choose one that should definitely, definitely not be remade.

Cantab Feature for Wednesday, May 27, 2015: Ron Goba

The Cantab's original Venerable Doorman, Ron Goba.

The Cantab’s original Venerable Doorman, Ron Goba.

In 1991, Ron Goba left his last job, Chair of English for the Hingham public schools, with only three goals: to write every day, to workshop every week, and to find an open mic where he could share his workshopped poems. Every Wednesday for nearly fifteen years, he manned the seat at the door, bridging the gap between audience and staff on the open mic, as well as with a warm handshake that told regulars when they had finally arrived. His dense, surprising, and sound-heavy work has been called “a live wire that hissess… a state fair muttering through a Stradivarius” by Tom Daley and “a touchstone for writing” by co-founding SlamMaster Michael Brown. The Boston Poetry Slam is proud to welcome back one of the voices that built the venue.

Note that tonight’s feature will take the stage at 9:30, necessitating a shortened open mic. The slam will follow the feature as usual.

This show in our weekly Wednesday series takes place at the Cantab Lounge, 738 Massachusetts Ave. in Cambridge. Doors for the show open at 7:15. The open mic begins at 8:00 and the feature performs EARLY TONIGHT at approximately 9:30. An open poetry slam in the 8×8 series will follow. The show is 18+ (ID required) and the cover charge is $3.

Cantab Recap For Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Another great night of slam at the Cantab, folks! We kicked off the night with a really solid open mic, followed by the excellent and up-and-coming Anthony Ragler from New York. Anthony brought us a slew of family poems, plus a little preview of what we might hear from him this year when he reps the Nuyorican at the National Poetry Slam.

The slam, of course, was the long-awaited Champion of Champions match, with Sean Patrick Mulroy defending his title against Sheldon Alexander, Chloé Cunha, Sophia Holtz, Sam Mercer, Nora Meiners, Kylie Noelle, and Bobby Crawford (Janae Johnson was on hand to heckle, of course). At the end of the speed-slam seven-poet slam, Chloé was the last poet standing, earning herself a season championship! She opted to let her cash prize ride in order to take a crack at dethroning Sean, but fell just short: Sean took the final round in a 3-2 nailbiter, retaining his title and earning the big $100.

Next week: our feature will start at 9:30, which means a slightly shorter open mic. Why? Because it’s our Venerable Doorman Ron Goba, of course, long-time doorman for the slam celebrating his birthday month with us. If you miss out on the open mic, though, don’t worry: we’ll be starting up another 8×8 series, which means eight slots in the open poetry slam at the end of the night.

Tips from the Bar: The Ken Arkind Prompt

Write a poem based on a common smell that you dislike.

Cantab Feature for Wednesday, May 20, 2015: Anthony Ragler and the Champion of Champions Speed Slam!

NPS 2014 Finalist Anthony Ragler. Photo by Philomena Haley.

NPS 2014 Finalist Anthony Ragler. Photo by Philomena Haley.

When he is not binge drinking cranberry juice and eating fruit snacks, Anthony Ragler is a 21-year old writer, performer, and father. Using poetry, music and step dance, Anthony aims to change lives and heal wounds. He is an English and Education Major at Mercy College.

Anthony is an artist known for using persona and body movement to attack social stigmas and overly-traditional forms of thinking. He was a member of the 2014 NYC Urbana Slam Team that placed second in the nation at the 2014 National Poetry Slam in Oakland, Calif., as well as the 2013 Urban Word Slam Team that placed third internationally at the Brave New Voices Festival. He is the Inspired Word 2014 Grand Slam Champion and the Lincoln Center’s first ever youth Grand Slam Champion. Anthony has performed at numerous venues, including the United Nations, Nuyorican Poets Cafe, Symphony Space, Lincoln Center, The Apollo Theatre and the Audubon Ballroom in NYC, the Scottish Rite Theatre in Oakland, CA, and the Auditorium Theatre in Chicago, Ill. He’s the first poet to teach Patricia Smith the Cupid Shuffle and the only poet to win a street fight on planet Neptune.

Tonight also marks the final night in our current 8×8 speed slam series! Eight slam winners will slam off for the season championship and the opportunity to challenge reigning Champion of Champions Sean Patrick Mulroy in an all-champions reduced-time-limit slam.

This show in our weekly Wednesday series takes place at the Cantab Lounge, 738 Massachusetts Ave. in Cambridge. Doors for the show open at 7:15. The open mic begins at 8:00 and the feature performs at approximately 10:00. The Champion of Champions Slam in the current 8×8 poetry slam series will follow. The show is 18+ (ID required) and the cover charge is $5.

Cantab Recap for Wednesday, May 13, 2015

The results of our fourteen-poet super-grand speed slam are in! After just three minutes of poetry (in two poems) each, standings are as follows:

1. Janae Johnson 54.5
2. Sean Patrick Mulroy 53.1
3. Kylie Noelle 51.3
4. Meaghan Ford 50.9
5. Nora Meiners 50.5
6. Zeke Russell 50.3
7. Mckendy Fils-Aimé 50.2
8. Sam Mercer 49.7

9. Ed Wilkinson
10. Zanne Langlois

11. Bobby Crawford
12. Nathan Comstock
13. Emily Carroll
14. Chloé Cunha

Poets in bold have qualified to slam in the June 10 World Qualifier Finals, with poets in italics invited to sacrifice for that show. Congratulations to all, and special thanks to sacrifices Marshall Gillson and Adam Stone, as well as our five not-even-surprisingly-consistent judges: Eric & Nicole, Elliot, Evan, Alex Hicks, and Ashley Truj.

This coming Wednesday: the slam don’t stop, folks. First, our feature will be NPS 2014 Finalist Anthony Ragler from NYC; the night will close out with our springtime Champion of Champions SPEED slam, where Sean Patrick Mulroy defends his long-running title. See you there!

Tips from the Bar: The Blind Assassin Prompt

You have a photograph of a meaningful moment. What’s just outside the frame?

Cantab Feature for Wednesday, May 13, 2015: World Qualifier Speed Slam

Our annual run of eight wildly and rapid speed slams winds down in May, folks, which means it’s time to ramp up for even more speed slam action: the World Qualifier series, a two-night, six-poem series to select the Boston Poetry Slam’s sole representative to the Individual World Poetry Slam! This year’s IWPS will take place in Washington, D.C. in October, and our World Qualifier slam winner will be entered into the event.

Night one of the World Qualifier will be our annual grand speed slam: a huge field of poets compete in a lightning-fast two-round slam using ONLY 2- and 1-minute poems. That means lots of new work performed by your favorite slam winners from the past year! Top scorers move on to Finals at the end of the month.

Want to see who’s qualified? Click here for the full list of speed slam invitees. You can also check out the full rules and format for the World Qualifier Series.

This show in our weekly Wednesday series takes place at the Cantab Lounge, 738 Massachusetts Ave. in Cambridge. Doors for the show open at 7:15. An slightly shortened open mic begins at 8:00 and the slam begins at approximately 10:00. The show is 18+ (ID required) and the cover charge is $5; proceeds will go toward funding the World Qualifier winner’s trip to IWPS in DC this October.

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