The Writeous Poets, a youth performance poetry collective from Little Rock, will be featured tonight at Wednesday Night Poetry at Kollective Coffee+Tea, 110 Central Ave.
The regular open mic session for all poets will begin at 6:30 p.m. Writeous Poets will begin their spoken word performance feature at 7 p.m., followed by another round of open mic. Admission is free and open to all ages.
"This fluid, ever-growing, and ever-evolving group of young poets has been in existence since 2000 under guidance and sponsorship of 2019 Arkansas State Teacher of the Year Stacey James McAdoo and her husband, the talented spoken word and visual artist LeRon McAdoo," a news release said.
Most of the Writeous Poets are current or former students of Little Rock Central High School. The school's history and passion toward social justice is not lost on the Writeous, as much of their work "focuses on the issues prevailing sociopolitical conversations of today such as systemic racism, police brutality against young African American boys, and gun violence. The inspiration for each varies, but for most, writing is a form of self-expression and their attempt to make sense of and improve the world around them," the release said.
Several members of the Writeous Poets have been published. Collectively they have a book entitled "A Writeous Look At The Crisis," with original poetry centered around the desegregation of Little Rock Central High School, including many unknown facts learned from their own research and one-on-one interviews with the primary sources themselves, it said.
"I am in perpetual awe of the bravery and fire of these young poets. They are some of the most gifted, dedicated, and hardest working writers and critical thinkers I know," McAdoo, whose two college-age children both still actively participate and perform with WP, and earned thousands of dollars in scholarship money for their poetic talents, said in the release.
"In fact, in terms of awards, if you check the records of the Thea Foundation Scholarships (which is the largest "purse" given for poetry scholarships -- $4,000 plus matching funds -- in the state), you'll find that members of the Writeous Poets have consistently won and dominated the scene since its second year of inception," McAdoo said.
The Writeous Poets have performed all over and in various capacities and events, from community forums, school events, conferences, churches, family reunions and rallies, to civic engagement events, banquets, retreats, libraries, colleges, and weddings. They have been commissioned in Georgia, Mississippi, New York, North Carolina, Washington D.C., Maryland, and Texas.
"We are thrilled to have the Writeous Poets come and feature for us at WNP," said host Kai Coggin, "I saw them perform at the Arkansas Literary Festival a couple years ago, and I remember being absolutely blown away by their timing, precision, and energy. These poets will leave you in amazement."
This week marks 1,598 consecutive Wednesdays of open mic poetry in downtown Hot Springs since Feb. 1, 1989. Email [email protected] for more information.Entertainment on 09/11/2019
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