Cantab Recap for Wednesday, March 7, 2012

We had a cozy night at the Cantab this week, folks, with a slightly shortened but super-intense open mic, followed by feature Gregory Hischak. This one-time Seattle slam champion, now a playwright based on the Cape (with his very own Thursday reading series to boot), read to us in his frenetic and endearing style. The slam was another hot one, with Kemi Alabi taking the final round over Quentin Lucas.

Next Wednesday: poet Stephen Meads comes to us from his new home of Portland, Oregon, and we finish up with the last open poetry slam in this 8×8 series.

Tips from the Bar: Easy on the Prophecy

Write a poem in the form of advice for your first child.

Feature for March 7, 2012: Gregory Hischak

A pensive Gregory Hischak.

A pensive Gregory Hischak.

During his West Coast life, poet and playwright Gregory Hischak was a Seattle Grand Slam Champ and toured with the spoken word troupes Staggered Thirds and WordCore. Now an East Coast fixture, he curates the Poetry Session at O’Shea’s in West Dennis and his plays have recently been staged by the Source Festival (Wash D.C.), Portland Stage Company (Portland ME), the Boston Theatre Marathon, and Actors Theatre of Louisville—as part of the 2011 Humana Festival of New American Works. His poetry collection, Parts & Labor, is newly out on Pond Road Press. He lives in South Yarmouth, Massachusetts.

Doors for the show open at 7:15. The open mic begins at 8:00 and the feature performs at approximately 10:00. 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, February 29, 2012

In case you were wondering, folks, it doesn’t snow downstairs in the Cantab; as we all know, the poetry is just too hot to allow it! After a stellar open mic, Lizard Lounge regular Neiel Israel powered through a true oratorial series of work, capturing the attention and imagination of the audience. A slam jam-packed with competitive readers came down to Omoizele Okoawo defeating Nora in the final round.

Next week: we’ll have Cape-Cod-via-Seattle old-school slam champ and established playwright Gregory Hischak, followed by another open slam.

But wait!– Can’t hold out until Wednesday to see more slam? No problem! This Saturday, March 3, the Boston Poetry Slam presents the Sixth Annual Attleboro Arts Museum Slam! Poets and spectators are invited to join us for a youth slam and adult slam with cash prizes, as well as special mini-features from April Ranger and Sam Teitel. Sign-ups start at 1:30 for a 2:00 show in the main room of the Museum. Hope the Commuter Rail and come spend your Saturday afternoon with us in Attleboro!

Tips from the Bar: Whose Shoes Are These?

Write a poem inspired by the unclaimed items at the lost and found.

Feature for February 29, 2012: Neiel Israel

Neiel Israel on the mic at our sister slam, the Lizard Lounge.

Neiel Israel on the mic at our sister slam, the Lizard Lounge.

Neiel Israel, Boston native, is fresh to the art of slam. In less than a year’s time, this powerful, lyrical voice became both a member of the 2011 Lizard Lounge National Poetry Slam Team and representative for the Lizard Lounge at the 2012 Women of the World Poetry Slam. She is an artist, poet, expressionist, singer and playwright.

Doors for the show open at 7:15. The open mic begins at 8:00 and the feature performs at approximately 10:00. 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, February 22, 2012

Cantabbers, is your heart broken? Does your tongue stick to the roof of your mouth when you try to string two metaphors together? Do you find that your inner monologue has taken on the rise and fall of a New York City barker selling incense on the streets of Ann Arbor? Well, you may be suffering from acute withdrawal from Angel Nafis, last night’s brilliant and engaging feature, who hung out and shot the snark with us for one mind-blowing night before heading to Oklahoma to begin her tour with the Dirt Choir.

Angel may be a tough show to follow, but if you stayed for the slam, you know the competition gave her a run for her money; with spring team qualifications inching closer, our open slams are getting hotter and hotter. Last night’s featured Maya Phillips pulling out a win in the final round against Sophia Holtz. Daaaayyyyyyyum.

Still waking up in the middle of the night craving good words? The only fix for what ails you is to come back next week! Our feature will be the Lizard Lounge’s famous Neiel Israel, and we’ll have another open poetry slam in the 8×8 series.

Tips from the Bar: Christopher Kain is What Kind of Puma?

Write a love poem in the voice of an animal.

Feature for February 22, 2012: Angel Nafis

Brooklyn poet Angel Nafis.

Brooklyn poet Angel Nafis.

Angel Nafis is an Ann Arbor, Michigan native, where she resided as the VOLUME youth poetry project’s Poet in Residence at the Neutral Zone Teen Center for two years. She represented Ann Arbor in the Brave New Voices festival two years in a row as a member of the Youth Slam Team, performing on the final stages at the San Francisco Opera House and the Apollo Theater in Harlem. Her work can be stumbled upon in FOUND Magazine’s Requiem for a Paper Bag, Decibels, GirlSpeak Webzine, The Bear Rivers Writing Conference Online Magazine, and Muzzle.

In 2011, she represented the LouderArts poetry project at both the Women of the World Poetry Slam and the National Poetry Slam. She is an Urban Word NYC Mentor. Her chapbook BlackGirl Mansion will be released through Red Beard Press in 2012. She currently curates and hosts a poetry reading series in Fort Greene, Brooklyn. She’s never leaving Brooklyn.

Doors for the show open at 7:15. The open mic begins at 8:00 and the feature performs at approximately 10:00. 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, February 15, 2012

Meaghan Ford suggests there just might be some joy in sex. Who's arguing with this lady? Photo by Marshall Goff.

Meaghan Ford suggests there just might be some joy in sex. Who's arguing with this lady? Photo by Marshall Goff.

Folks, we have somehow survived another Erotic Poetry Night at the Cantab Lounge! It was another night of poets mixing the sensual with the slutty, subtlety with straight-up (or not) sex, and erotica with neurotica… Let’s just say we’re pretty sure Congress doesn’t have a panel to deal with ANY of the propositions we heard last night. Thanks to all our open mic readers, especially the first-timers who chose this particular night to finally give in and come down to the show!

Wow, even slam host Kevin Spak is disgusted with Adam Stone's haiku. Photo by Marshall Goff.

Wow, even slam host Kevin Spak is disgusted with Adam Stone's haiku. Photo by Marshall Goff.

Thanks in no small part to producer Gary Hoare, as well as improvising haiku host Kevin Spak, the Head-to-Head Dirty Haiku Slam was a raging (not infection-like, more hurricane-like) success! An extremely competitive first round saw the elimination of local favorites Cassandra de Alba, and April Penn, as well as warmly-welcomed Worcester guest Jessica Lovina O’Neill. The controversial fourth elimination of the ribald and tipsy Jade Sylvan (at the hands of Patrick S.) actually forced a one-haiku death-match round in which Patrick cemented his win… Only to go down to Harlym125 in the next round of semis. After dirty girl Brandi MacDonald gave it up to Adam Stone in the second semi, it was 125 vs. Adam in the head-to-head.

Naturally, the best-of-seventeen final round came down to an eight-to-eight tie. Despite Adam’s apparent inability to count to seventeen, 125’s [unprintable]bubbles ultimately lost out to the nastiest possible senryu version of the Dozens. Congrats to Adam Stone on his win! –and an extra round of applause for Harlym125, who no doubt has a little brother or sister on the way.

Next week: we’re back with Angel Nafis, rising star who comes to us from Brooklyn, plus an open slam in the 8×8 series. In the meantime, please enjoy this lovely photo set from the evening, courtesy of Marshall Goff.