Wednesday, March 25, 2009


The MN Spoken Word Association Presents

The URBAN GRIOTS Spoken Word Awards Celebration
An 8 Year Retrospective Honoring One of the Nation's Most Vibrant Communities
The Official National Poetry Month Kick-Off!
Friday, April 3, 2009

WHAT: An evening of historic recognition, noted nominees, awards, music and dance highlighting the magnitude of the celebrated Spoken Word community in the Twin Cities and beyond. Not to be missed performances by Twin Cities finest spoken word artists, bands, and DJs. The official 2009 National Poetry Month kick off, this evening is one of the most culturally diverse artistic gatherings held this year. A night to Celebrate and Remember!!

“What you all have here is special…don’t ever forget that.” Amiri Baraka (2008)

“I’ve been saying for years, the Twin Cities Spoken Word Community is one of the most advanced, and innovative, in the country, and a number of artists here can stand toe to toe with many of the top artists nationwide. It just usually doesn't get the attention it deserves.”
e.g.bailey (MN Spoken Word Association/Tru Ruts)

Friday, April 3, 2009. Doors at 8pm. Event at 9pm. The Varsity Theater.
1308 Fourth St. S.E., Minneapolis.

$3 Before 9:30pm, $5 After 9:30pm
Advance Tickets Available at | 612-604-0222

Group Reservations are being taken now for reserved seating via email at


Master of Ceremony: Tiyo Siyolo
Music By: DJ Mixwell
Awards: Over 20 categories of awards, ranging from New Artist of the Year to launching MN’s 1st Spoken Word Hall of Fame.

Performances By:
J. Otis Powell, Truthmaze, Bao Phi, Edupoetic Enterbrainment (Frank Sentwali, Tiyo, Queen Drea), Hyder Ali, Ibe Kaba, Palabristas, Ed Bok Lee, Poetic Assassins, MPLS and St. Paul Slam Teams, Marie Chante, Guante, Chantz, Tish Jones, Lady Lit, October, Karma, Niyah Bengai, and other surprise guests.

SPONSORS: KFAI Fresh Air Community Radio and KMOJ Radio

Interview opportunities, digital photos and video are available upon request.

Sha Cage, MN Spoken Word Association
(612) 288-9491 or

MN Spoken Word Association (MNSWA) is one of the premier Spoken Word organizations in the nation with programming solely dedicated to spoken word and urban arts. It strives to empower youth and community through leadership, literacy, and spoken word! Programming includes: workshops and residencies in schools and community centers, regional/national travel, social justice work, area slams, radio shows, consulting and producing projects, youth leadership groups, and sustainable partnerships.

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