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Verbal Blend program to host city-wide student poetry slam

April 09, 2010

Carol Kim Masiclat
(315) 443-8568

Syracuse University spoken word program Verbal Blend invites members of the Syracuse and campus communities to the “Take the Mic” poetry slam on Thursday, April 22, at 7:30 p.m. in the Regency Ballroom of the Sheraton Syracuse University Hotel & Conference Center. Doors open at 7 p.m.

The event will feature a performance by Giles Li, a nationally renowned Asian American poet and activist who uses art to unite communities and cultures in his hometown of Boston and throughout the Northeast. His appearance at the event is part of SU’s Asian Pacific American Heritage Month celebration and National Poetry Month.

In addition to his spoken word performances, Li is dedicated to creating opportunities for Asian Pacific American artists to explore and share art. He founded the groundbreaking Boston Progress Arts Collective to build a community for Asian Pacific American artists. He has spoken on Asian American community issues in a variety of news media, including the Boston Globe, Boston Herald, Chicago Tribune, Baltimore Sun and Oakland Tribune. He is the author of the book “The Snake Dance of Asian American Activism: Community, Vision, and Power” (Lexington Books, 2008) and made the documentary “Art Beyond Borders.”

During the two rounds of competition, 17 poets will read or recite original material up to three minutes each. Five judges will score the performances based on originality, stage presence, content, delivery and time, and prizes will be awarded to first-, second- and third-place finishers. Li will perform after the contestant readings and before the prizes are awarded. SU student Aaron “FaSho” Hudson will host the event, with music by Redbrick DJs. For a preview of the poets competing, visit

Verbal Blend is a spoken-word poetry program designed to enhance students’ confidence in writing and performing original poems. The program comprises a six-week workshop series on poetry forms, formats, journal entries and peer reviews. It is based in the Office of Multicultural Affairs at SU. For more information on Verbal Blend, contact Cedric Bolton at 443-9676 or This event is free and open to the public.

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