Brickyard spoken word is pleased to announce a new showcase called Intersectional Poetica, a program designed to give extended time and exposure to artists from a diversity of backgrounds, presenting work that is timely, urgent, and focused on giving voice to traditionally marginalized communities. Each showcase of the Intersectional Poetica project will feature work of spoken word artists in specific communities, and will be launched in association Black History Month in February of 2023, Asian Heritage Month in May, 2023, Indigenous History Month in June, 2023 and World Mental Health Day this October, 2022.
The Brickyard YouTube channel, not only offers a growing collection of interviews and performances from Canada’s top spoken word artists, it also provides a centralized hub for teachers and educators looking to introduce their students to the art of spoken word – an orature that emerged from grass-roots culture, informed by Indigenous and POC oral literary traditions. From Indigenous storytelling to hip-hop-infused slam poems, spoken word is the poetic of marginalized voices. With this new initiative Brickyard will be taking time to celebrate, elevate and amplify traditionally under-represented artists through a series of showcases, interspersed throughout the year, featuring 15-minute performance sets and 30-minute interviews with 20 celebrated spoken word artists.
A program of Canadian publisher Brick Books, over the past few years, Brickyard has featured some of the most captivating writing, poetry, storytelling, dub poetry, jazz poetry, sound poetry, performance poetry, slam poetry, and acapella rap this country has to offer. Past Brickyard features include Griffin Poetry Prize winner: Kaie Kellough, Governor General’s Award winner: George Elliot Clarke, Juno Award winner: Lillian Allen, Order of Canada recipient: Sheri-D Wilson, Canadian Screen Awards winner: Wendy Motion Brathwaite, Slam Champion: Ian Keteku, Pavlick Poetry Prize winner: Andrea Thompson, international best-selling author: Jesse Thistle, and ReLit award-winner, Charlie Petch.
Spoken word is a continually changing art form of voice, passion and poetic expression. Before there were books, there was spoken word; it is where the story of literature begins. Spoken word proclaims the importance of speaking out – using captivating oratory and skillful linguistics to share our perspective and our lived experience. It is how we proclaim our identities, how we share both our pain and our victories. It is how we speak truth to power. It is how we change the world.
We acknowledge the support of the Canada Council for the Arts & the Ontario Arts Council.