By Jessica Brant:
The Pure Ink Poetry Slam is heating up the city with a spoken word army, sizzling with talent this winter, and they’re boasting a fresh new format and location to boot.
The slam, previously held at Merge Restaurant on Delaware Avenue and Main Street Studios and formerly a once a month event, has moved to their new location at the Gypsy Parlor on Grant Street and will now be hosted every second and fourth Sunday of each month. An open mic session has also been added to the beginning of each slam, so poets who do not want to compete but wish to melt minds with fellow wordsmiths can do so.
“We wanted a venue that had a stage, mic and lighting, and we enjoyed the old venues, but we needed the social atmosphere too,” said slam creator Brandon Williamson of their location change. “We spent a few months over at Main Street Studios and the winter hit us hard. They started going through a renovation so we stretched out to find a new venue, and why not one of the newest places in town with the similar feel as our first venue at Merge?”
There is also a new rule in effect: no repeat poems. Poets can no longer perform the same poems they did the previous month.
“(The new rule) keeps people coming back. It challenges poets to write and come up with new pieces,” Williamson said.
Performing for a packed house last month, the slammers, a few of which were part of the winning team bringing home the first place trophy from the Empire State Slam and the QEW Poetry Slam in Ontario this year, are gearing up for yet another hype-filled event. The next Pure Ink Poetry Slam will commence at 6:30 pm on Sunday following a book signing for local author and slam winner Ben Brindise’s latest publication, “I Was a Lid.” The slam is $5 for poets and spectators.
For more information about the Pure Ink Poetry Slam, visit www.pureinkpoetry.com.