Familiar faces, new voices on poetry slam team
When freshman Sey Elemo started at Towson last semester, she noticed that Towson didn’t have a poetry slam team, but she wanted to make sure that her voice, as well as those of other Towson students, was heard.
“I was kind of nervous to [start a team] myself, but I had some friends who encouraged me to do it,” Elemo said.
Elemo’s next step was to start the Voices Slam Team, a poetry team that began with the support of the Black Student Union. The group’s first event will be in April or early May, but Elemo, who is the team’s president, along with other students who are on the board, began holding auditions in December.
“We’re doing two parts for auditions. The first round of auditions was two weeks ago where we told people to send in their videos in December. We sat down last week and went through the videos. And so right now, we’re down to about 16 poets,” Elemo said. The second part of auditions will be live next Tuesday.
This audition will determine which students will be performing in their poetry slam event.
“Auditions went so much better than I thought they would be,” Elemo said. “I knew they were go-ing to be good, but they were amazing. There’s so much talent in Towson and there is so many poets, rappers and lyricists out there…it’s difficult to narrow it down.”
Many of the people who auditioned are Towson students who previously kept their poetry skills hidden.
Not many people write poetry today because of the technological advances in our society today, Elemo said, but it’s clubs like Towson’s Voice Slam Team that how unique and rewarding poetry can be.
“It’s not just somebody sitting down and writing words that are pretty together and sound nice. It’s really therapeutic,” Elemo said. “When you listen to a poet’s poetry is like a piece of them, how they’re feeling, things that they don’t want to say aloud.”
Elemo said she is looking forward to a bright future for the Voice Slam Team.
As time gets closer to the team’s first event, the Voice Slam Team will meet and practice regularly so that they can show Towson students the best of slam poetry.
“[People] should probably expect to see a lot of people that they see in passing that they don’t realize were that skilled or that talented. I got feedback from some of the finalists saying ‘I always write, but I never perform,’” Elemo said. “What I think we can do is give them the confidence to perform their poetry because it’s a lot of beautiful writing.”