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Photo courtesy of Urban Legends.

Ottawa collective Urban Legends heads to national spoken word competition

By Amanda Armstrong on October 18, 2016



Beginning with words spoken in classrooms at Carleton University, Urban Legends has grown from a small poetry slam into what it is now, a spoken word events community called the Urban Legends Poetry Collective (ULPC).

Despite having been around for nearly a decade, it is only recently, under the direction of Khaleefa Hamdan and Panos Argyrop, that ULPC has expanded into a larger poetry community.

Tonight, the Urban Legends 2016 team will be featured at a special fundraiser edition of the Urban Legends Poetry Slam.

In addition to the poetry slam that began it all, they now host poetry showcases, such as Poets and Pancakes and the Urban Legends Jazz Project, a weekend writing circle called Art in the Tea Leaves, held at Origin Studios, a storytelling competition called Tell Me A Story, whose proceeds go to local charities, and their newest venture, Youth Speak, a youth poetry mentorship program run in partnership with the Ottawa Public Library.

For Urban Legends, their slam season begins in September and runs through until the end of April. During that time, poets compete for the opportunity to make finals, in which a dozen poets lay their words on the line for a chance at one of the spots on the Ottawa team, who then go on to compete nationally at the Canadian Festival of Spoken Word (CFSW). This year, the team is comprised of four poets: Nina Vuleta, CauseMo, Apollo the Child, and Blue. Together they will meld their own unique styles into team pieces, as well as creating new solo pieces, to take with them to CFSW, happening at the end of this month in Winnipeg.

The Canadian Festival of Spoken Word happens in late October every year. Each year the festival is held in a different city in Canada – this year’s festival being held in Winnipeg. The weeklong festival is the country’s largest poetry slam competition. The festival is comprised of workshops, events, and multiple bouts, which determine the top Canadian team.

Tonight, the Urban Legends 2016 team will be featured at a special fundraiser edition of the Urban Legends Poetry Slam. Together they will put on a 20 minute feature set as a part of the regular slam. This event will be held at LIVE on Elgin (220 Elgin Street, above Dunn’s).

Doors open at 5:30pm, the slam starts at 6pm, and the event runs until 8pm. Tickets will be sold at the door for 7$ and the proceeds will help send the team to compete in Winnipeg.

If you who wish to support the team, but can’t make it to the event, you can do so by downloading a digital, pay-what-you-can, copy of their spoken word album recorded with Dead Ringer media and was mixed and mastered by Gruw Raw and Sean Blake.

Also, if you happen to be a poet yourself, why not come out and try your hand at the open mic – or compete in the slam for your chance to make the Urban Legends 2017 team!

To keep yourself in the know about all things Urban Legends, follow them on Facebook or Twitter.