Previously at the ICA - Events

To Exist is to Resist: Young Poets\' Words for These Times

29 Jan 2013

What’s important for young people all over the world today? What do they care about? And how do they express it? It seems — through poetry.

Join an exciting line-up of new poets from around the world to celebrate the launch of Global Youth Cultures, the latest issue of Wasafiri, the Magazine of International Contemporary Writing. For one night only, the myriad of issues that matter to young artists – from the political to the personal – will take centre stage, told in lyrical tongues by poets from Cambodia, the Middle East, the UK and the USA. From rap to performance poetry, the best of tomorrow’s writers will tell us how life is for young people today. If you’re inspired, add your own stories to theirs by performing at the open mic session following the show.

With Blake Brandes, Ahmed Haddad and Walid El Hamamsy, Avaes Mohammad, Rafeef Ziadah AND a screening of Kosal Khiev’s award-winning Berlin Poetry Film Festival’s Spoken Word performance.

Ahmed Haddad is an Egyptian poet and filmmaker born in Cairo in 1984. He has published four poetry collections in Arabic: Blossoming Roses (2000), A Bit of Dust (2007), The Wardrobe (2008) and Gently (2011). He has written songs for film, television and various singers and bands including Eskenderella, Fairouz Karawia and Ahmed Ali Al-Haggar. He has written and directed three short films in Arabic: All Girls Like Chocolate (2008), Alexandria (2012) and Remote Control (2012) and has starred in the Arabic feature film Free Times (2006).

Kosal Khiev is a poet, teaching artist and a survivor of the US prison system. In 2011, after fourteen years of imprisonment, the US government deported him to Cambodia, a country he had never been to before. Since then he has used poetry to uplift his situation with compelling performances at TedX Phnom Penh, local universities and public stages. His poetry captivates audiences, in particular a growing urban youth population, where his creative writing workshops attract 100 kids weekly. In collaboration with Studio Revolt, Kosal released a debut video Why I Write. A documentary about his life and art entitled Verses in Exile is currently in production.

Avaes Mohammad has a PhD in chemistry and is a poet and playwright. He joined the Manchester-based Asian underground movement Nashini in 2002 and has performed his poetry in the UK, Denmark, India, Pakistan and South Africa. His poem ‘Bhopal’ was commissioned by BBC Radio 4 and won an Amnesty International Media Award in 2005. His plays have been commissioned by radio and theatre companies and include In God We Trust (2005), Shadow Companion (2008) and Crystal Kisses (2010/2011).

Rafeef Ziadah is a Palestinian refugee, poet and human rights activist based in London. Her performances of poems like ‘We Teach Life, Sir’ and ‘Shades of Anger’ went viral online within days of their release. She received an Ontario Arts Council Grant from the Word of Mouth programme to create her debut spoken-word album Hadeel in 2009 and represented Palestine at the Southbank Centre’s Poetry Parnassus in 2012.

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