September 8-9, 2017
Friday, September 8th
The UnSlam: Black Box Theatre, 7PM
Spoken word artists from Tupelo & around the country will come together for a competitive spoken word event, The UnSlam. Chosen by lottery, participants will compete in the two-round Unslam with a 1st, 2nd and 3rd place winner selected through Audience Choice for a $500 top cash prize and bragging rights. Get ready to cast YOUR vote!
An adult social gathering immediately following the UnSlam! This party is selfishly scheduled to also celebrate InkFestival producer Asia Rainey’s birthday with her partner-in-crime and fellow Virgo, Sha’Condria “iCon” Sibley (co-creator of the Write, NOLA! Festival).
Saturday, September 9th
Spoken Word Workshopss – 1 & 2:30pm, Link Centre WordPlay Studio
Two community sessions will be offered on Saturday afternoon, free and open to the public in the WordPlay Studio:
1:00 pm: Donney Rose
Donney Rose is a poet, teaching artist and community activist from Baton Rouge. He works as a teaching artist and marketing director for an arts-based non-profit, Forward Arts Inc. Donney is the author of The Crying Buck, an acclaimed chapbook of poetry that delves into Black masculinity and vulnerability through a critical lens. His work as a performance poet/writer has been featured on, Atlanta Black Star.com , Blavity.com Button Poetry, All Def Digital, Slam Find, 225 Magazine and in online journals Drunk In A Midnight Choir Nicholls State’s Gris Gris literary journal. His work as a community activist has been highlighted on BBC, Huffington Post, New York Times, Democracy Now, and The Advocate. He received the Humanitarian of the Year award at 2016 New V Awards for promoting activism through his art.
2:30pm Sunni Patterson
Originally from New Orleans, LA, Sunni Patterson combines the heritage, culture, and traditions of her native town with a spiritual worldview to create powerful music and poetry.
Emerging from the musical womb that is New Orleans, Sunni Patterson combines the heritage of her native town with an enlightened modern style to create music and poetry that is timeless in its groove. She began her career as a full-time high school teacher, and much of her life since has been devoted to serving as a cultural worker and grassroots activist, using art and poetry to encourage dialogue and healing.
She has been a featured performer at many of the nation’s premier spoken-word venues, including HBO’s Def Poetry and BET’s Lyric Cafe. She also had the privilege of speaking at the Panafest in Ghana, West Africa and has collaborated with artists and performers, including Hannibal Lokumbe (singing lead vocals for his score, ”King and the Crescent City Moon”), Kalamu Ya Salaam, Sonia Sanchez, Wanda Coleman, Amiri Baraka, Mos Def, Eve Ensler, The Last Poets and many more.
INKFEST Finale – 7PM, Link Centre Concert Hall
$10 in advance – $15 at the door (Purchase online Tickets here.)
The Finale, hosted by artist and festival producer Asia Rainey, will feature nationally acclaimed spoken word artists Sunni Patterson and Donney Rose, with performers from the Tupelo spoken word community: Kinzie Mackey, Autumn Bankhead, and Kelneccia Vontae. The showcase will also make a very special spoken word presentation.
INKFESTIVAL is proudly sponsored by the Tupelo Convention & Visitors’ Bureau, Toyota, Dodge’s, and the CREATE Foundation.