OutLoud Eco!Slam!

OutLoud - the Victorian youth spoken word poetry slam!

Subscribe to our Youtube channel where you can view all all your faves performing live this year for the OutLoud Slam Poetry Competition! Go here.

What is it?

OutLoud 2018 is a spoken word slam competition where secondary students compete in teams of up to four. They write, choreograph and perform their original work for a panel of professional judges as part of the Melbourne Writers Festival. Now in its eighth year, OutLoud continues to be supported by the City of Melbourne Arts Grants Program.

2018 OutLoud Eco!Slam! will celebrate our partnership with Royal Botanic Gardens Victoria and Red Room Poetry, encouraging students to create poems inspired by the environment.

Would you like a workshop?

Would you like to participate in a hip hop poetry workshop at the Royal Botanical Gardens Victoria? 

Using the wonderland that is the botanical gardens as inspiration acclaimed writer Maxine Beneba Clarke, slam poet Emilie Zoey Baker and hip hop artist Mantra will guide students to write new eco-themed work. 

The workshops go for 90 minutes (limit 30 students each) and before starting schools are encouraged to go on the free 30 minute New Shoots poetry walk where poems have been ‘planted’ round the gardens. Using slam, rhyme, metaphor and simile students will connect words to the sky, sentences to the ground, make paper planes and find buried texts. They will leave with nature songs on their fingers and flowers blooming in their ink. 

You can book a workshop for your school here. Year 2 to year 12.

As in previous years, however, our Slam Poet-Teachers can also visit your school for a workshop.

How does it work?
Schools develop, edit, rehearse and polish an original spoken word poetry performance and then present their pieces to professional judges who score each act out of 10. Heats will take place at Royal Botanic Gardens Victoria and the Final at Federation Square.   The brief is five points for content and five for presentation. There’s a two-minute limit and only Victorian secondary schools are invited to enter.
What do you win?
I’m glad you asked! The winners receive a paid performance at the State finals of the National Australian Poetry Slam at the State Library of Victoria, a radio interview and a professional workshop with a leading internationally acclaimed hip hop artist and poet. Poems are published on Australian Poetry and Red Room Poetry websites, and in AP magazines. They also receive individual subscriptions to Australian Poetry (publishers of Australian Poetry Journal and Australian Poets Anthology) and Express Media (publishers of Voiceworks, Australia’s premier youth literary journal, publishing poetry, fiction, articles, comics and visual artwork by people under 25.). It will also rain glory and gold plated kisses from the sky. (Ok that last bit might not be true but there are some other sweet prizes including a trophy!)   All heats and the Final will be professionally filmed and each school will receive a copy.
When is it?
The OutLoud Final will as usual be part of the 2018 Melbourne Writers Festival Schools Program. The Final will be held on Tuesday the 28th August at Federation Square.   The heats will be held at the Royal Botanic Gardens Victoria in early August.
How long has this been going?

From humble beginnings in 2010, OutLoud has grown from four schools battling it out to a massive twenty plus competing in a number of heats with four schools in the two groups (Year 7-9, and Year 10-12) going through to a final at Deakin Edge in Federation Square. Once again Australian Poetry has appointed OutLoud founder and leading Slam Poet Emilie Zoey Baker (EZB) as Artistic Director.

Past Judges of OutLoud have included Jason Steger (Literary Editor, The Age), Alicia Sometimes (Read with Raf 774), MANTRA (leading Australian hip hop artist), Abe Nouk (award winning spoken word performer), Michaela McGuire (Director, Emerging Writers’ Festival), Jo Case (Program Manager, Melbourne Writers Festival), Mahogany Browne (Curator Nuyorican Poets Café), and David Ryding (Melbourne City of Literature office). Heats and finals are hosted by Emilie Zoey Baker aka EZB aka Big Deal.

How do I start?

The best way is to fill out a registration form with your school’s details. You can find the registration form here.


Where can I see some examples?

Go to our OutLoud You Tube Channel! There’s heats and finals performances from over 40 schools.

To view the gallery, click on the image.

OutLoud continues to amaze and delight me. The kids who participated back in 2011 are now young adults and part of the emerging poetry scene in Melbourne. I really couldn’t be prouder. A new community is born every year and every year the poets get more confident, powerful and OUTspoken. 2018 is going to be even bigger and I’m beyond thrilled to be partnering with the Royal Botanic Gardens Victoria and Red Room Poetry! Bring on the ECO!Slam!

Emilie Zoey Baker (EZB)

Artistic Director, OutLoud