Where to catch the UK’s BEST up and coming Spoken Word performers

SOUTHAMPTON’S prestigious slam poetry competition returns tonight, with an incredible prize for the winners.

Hammer & Tongue Solent brings together rising stars in the world of spoken word to The Art House on Above Bar Street.

The venue for the poetry competition will be at the Art House Cafe.
The venue for the poetry competition will be at the Art House Cafe.

One winner will be awarded the opportunity to progress to the Regional Finals in December, as well as the 2019 National Poetry Slam finals, held at London’s Royal Albert Hall.

The competition takes place at the venue every month, however tonight’s show features two highly celebrated performers: 2018’s National Poetry Slam Champion Usaama Minhas and Desree.

Usaama Minhas performs poetry that focuses on themes of philosophy and satire. Runner-Up Desree discusses empowerment and relationships which are addressed in her poems ‘Esteem’ and ‘Are You Ok?’.

Credit: @htsolent
Credit: @htsolent

On the topic of tonight’s performance, Desree says: “From heartbreak to hair, my set tonight will explore relationships, what it means to be a woman and the new-found idea of masculinity.”

Alongside them, eight other poets sign up to perform their bid for the finals.

Each poet performs for three minutes, while five randomly chosen audience members mark the poems. The performer with the highest score will be awarded the opportunity to perform at the Royal Albert Hall.

Contestants will take the mic and showcase their best work.
Contestants will take the mic and showcase their best work.

The competition is open to all aspiring poets. Anyone can go and watch the talent for a ticket price of £7.50.

Listen below to what Usaama Minhas had to say about what is to be expected at tonight’s Hammer and Tongue event:

by Ivy Kamau (@ivynkamau), Eleanor Chivers (@eleanor_chivers) and Kieran Pope.