Macalester students to compete at the College Unions Poetry Slam competition

By Mariana Roa Oliva

This Saturday, March 6, the Macalester Poetry Slam will be hosting a competition between the Macalester slam team and the University of Minnesota slam team. The event will be a fundraiser for the Macalester team’s trip to the College Unions Poetry Slam Invitational (CUPSI) at Emerson College in Boston this April. CUPSI has been an annual event for ten years now, starting with the 2001 competition between seven colleges at University of Michigan, Ann Arbor. The number of colleges competing in it has risen drastically since then, and this year between 40 and 50 colleges are expected to compete. This is the first year that Macalester will be sending a team to CUPSI, and, in preparation, the team has been meeting twice a week this semester to rewrite pieces and workshop performances. The members of the team, Dylan Garity ’12, Neil Hilborn ’11, Colin Welch ’10 and Barb Walkowiak ’13 were chosen based on how poets placed in the four monthly slams held last semester.

Garity, who has been participating in Macalester Poetry Slams since his freshmen year, commented, “It’s nice having a team member from each year, as each of us brings a different experience both with writing in general and particularly with slam, and the workshopping has been extremely helpful to all of us as well as being a lot of fun.”

In addition to team meetings and helping run the Macalester slam, the four members of the team have been competing at the Minneapolis and St. Paul adult slams to test out their pieces, and so far they have done really well. Neil qualified for the semifinals for the Minneapolis team, and Dylan for the finals in St. Paul.

The slam this week against University of Minnesota is very promising. The U of M’s team got fifth place in the nation last year, and they will probably bring some amazing pieces to the slam. If you have any questions about the slam, email [email protected]

Doors at 10K will open at 7:00 p.m., open mic at 7:30 p.m., slam at 8:00 p.m. Refreshments will be provided. Suggested $5 donation, but no one will be turned away for lack of funds.