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Sedona Poetry Slam on Feb. 3 to select three poets for the All-Arizona Championship Poetry Slam

The fourth annual Poetry Slam of Sedona Poetry Slam's 15th season will feature high-energy competitive spoken word in the Mary D. Fisher Theater on Saturday, March 9th at 7:30 p.m. .

The top three poets from this slam will earn a spot in the Arizona Championship at the BlackBerry Peach Poetry Slam to be held at the Rebel Lounge in Phoenix in April.

open slam

Anyone can compete in a poetry slam as long as they have the poetry to read and the courage to get on stage. Poetry Slams are like his high-energy three-minute one-man shows that are judged by the audience. Anyone can sign up for this slam and win a $75 first prize and a $25 runner-up prize. To compete in the slam, a poet must each have three original poems of his own, no longer than three minutes long. Props, costumes, and musical accompaniment are not permitted. Poets will be judged Olympic-style by five randomly selected spectators at the start of the competition.

Slam poetry is an art form that allows poets on the written page to share their work with theater performers, hip-hop artists, and lyricists. Poets from as far away as Phoenix, Tucson, and Flagstaff will compete with adult poets from Sedona and Cottonwood, college student poets from Northern Arizona University, and youth poets from Sedona Red Rock High School. All types of poetry are welcome on stage, from street-inspired hip-hop and narrative performance poetry to political rants and introspective confessionals. Any poem becomes a “slam” poem if it is performed in a contest. Every poet gets to entertain and inspire the audience with her creativity for her three minutes per round.

Mary D. Fisher Theater is located at 2030 W. SR 89A, Suite A-3 in West Sedona. Tickets are $12. For tickets, call 282-1177 or visit

This season's next poetry slam will be held on Saturday, April 13th and will feature Portland's Brianna Grace Hammerstrom. Via Flagstaff, Oregon. Saturday, May 11th. And finally, Saturday, June 8th.

Three poets, Lydia Gates, Josh Wyss, and Tyler “Valens” Sylvinskas, will be selected for the February Poetry Slam and will represent Sedona at the All Arizona Poetry Slam Championships in Maricopa in March. He will appear as a.

The prize money is funded in part by a donation from Verde Valley Poetry Supporters Jeanne and Jim Freeland.

Sign up early by emailing or sign up by the Friday before Slam or at the door the day of Slam. Poets wishing to compete must purchase a ticket in case the roster is filled before arrival.

For more information, visit or For a complete list of slam poetry events in Arizona, visit

blackberry peach

The top three poets will earn three spots in Sedona at the Arizona State Championships in the BlackBerry Peach National Poetry Slam, sponsored by the Arizona Poetry Society.

Three poets each from open poetry slams in Sedona, Mesa, Prescott, Phoenix, and Flagstaff, sponsored by Ghost Poetry Slam, 15 poets hosted by Ben “B. Jam” Gardea Participate in slams.

The overall state champion will receive an ASPS-sponsored trip to represent Arizona at the National Federation of State Poetry Societies' Blackberry Peach National Slam, June 5th-8th in Roswell, Georgia. You will win.

B Jam, a regular Sedona Poetry Slam competitor, is from Phoenix and is married and the father of three children. Gardea overcame both alcoholism and a rare hip disease that left him unable to walk. After getting sober and having total hip replacement surgery, he had two goals. He loves publishing poetry and hiking the mountains of Sedona. Three years later, B-Jam became his 2023 ASPS State Poetry Slam champion, ranked him 10th nationally, and has been organizing writers' workshops, being featured at poetry events, and receiving grants for poetry book publishing. Wins gold and serves as host and producer of the popular PHX Poetry Slam. .

“Poetry has changed my life, and I want to be a custodian of an art form that future generations can explore and participate in, because poetry has the potential to have the deepest human impact. Because I know there is,” Bee Jam said.

What is a poetry slam?

Founded in 1984 by Mark Smith at Chicago's Green Mill Tavern, Poetry Slam gets people who might not otherwise go to poetry readings excited about the art form when it comes to high-energy competition. It is a competitive artistic sport that aims to The poetry slam is judged by his five randomly selected audience members, who assign a numerical value to each poet's content and performance.

Poetry slams have become an international art sport, with over 100 major poetry slams held in the United States, Canada, Australia, and Western Europe. The slam poets have opened at the Winter Olympics, performed at the White House and the United Nations General Assembly, and were featured on HBO's “Russell Simmons' Def Poets.”

The City of Sedona is sending a team of four poets to represent the city at the National Poetry Slam in Charlotte, North Carolina, Boston, Cambridge, Massachusetts, Oakland, California, Decatur, Georgia, Denver, and Chicago. .

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