14. The Poet's Block Party - The FOLD

14. The Poet’s Block Party

A powerful presentation of spoken word poetry. [CC]

Session Description

Four poets present works that challenge culture, celebrates community and showcases the wonder of words in this annual must-see event. Spoken Word artists Des Mackenzie, Jamaal Rogers, D’Scribe, and Shyy perform with a block-party intermission featuring DJ Roshanie.

Saturday, May 2nd : 10:00pm – 11:30pm EST

This event has already taken place. Thank you to all who attended! Find other events to attend and view the full schedule of events here.

Featured Speaker(s)

F20_DScherle copy
D’Scribe
Bio
D Mckenzie
Desiree Mckenzie
Bio
Jamaal Jackson Rogers
Jamaal Jackson Rogers
Bio
Shiann Croft
Sincerely Shyy
Bio
DJ Roshanie
DJ Roshanie
Bio
F20_DScherle copy

D’Scribe

D’Scribe the poet is an indigenous spoken word artist currently residing in Niagara. He has competed, cried, lost and won on many slam stages around Turtle Island. Currently working on his appearance in the play “Over to you” hitting the meridian center in Niagara falls in mid December as well as a video series that will be released early February 2020. D’Scribe is loud, angry and unapologetic on stage. Offstage, though he is a giant teddy bear.

D’Scribe will appear in The Spoken Word Showcase and The Poet’s Gallery.

D Mckenzie

Desiree Mckenzie

A proud Brampton kid at heart, Des has touched many stages around the GTA. She is the co-director of the Toronto BAM! Youth Slam and 2019 Canadian Festival of Spoken Word National Champion. Poetry turns her stories of relationships, growing up and struggles with self-love as an Indo-Caribbean (queen) into tales of perseverance. She has a passion for spreading poetry through her community hoping that others find strength through stanza, by way of the soul.

Desiree will appear in The Spoken Word Showcase and The Poet’s Gallery.

Jamaal Jackson Rogers

Jamaal Jackson Rogers

Jamaal Jackson Rogers is an award winning poet, arts educator, creative entrepreneur, and performance artist. As a poet, he was selected to be Ottawa’s first English Poet Laureate after 27 years in which the position had gone unfilled, while his career in arts education has earned him 2016’s Ontario Arts Educator Award. His defining moments are when he makes intimate connections with his participants during workshop exchanges and performance sets.

Jamaal will appear in the Spoken Word Showcase and The Poet’s Gallery.

Shiann Croft

Sincerely Shyy

Shiann Croft is an educator, spoken word artistscreenwriter and change agent to art and culture in the GTA.The Brampton based poetess has a powerful relationship with storytelling that is ancestral and thought-provoking. Using words such as storyteller, cultural custodial and prophet of the times to describe herself, Shiann is also a brilliant educator that uses creative writing as a tool to center the experiences of black folx.

Shyy will appear in The Poet’s Gallery.

DJ Roshanie

DJ Roshanie

Roshanie is a Brampton-based DJ that is known for her nostalgic and global song selections. She has shared stages with international acts and some of Canada’s most promising emerging artists. Beyond the DJ booth, Roshanie is a resident host on ISO Radio, a community radio station broadcasting live from Central Toronto. She is also the founder of feminist educational initiative, Solidarity in Sound, which works toward gender equity in music.

The FOLD is a remarkable and wonderful event for authors and attendees alike. What an amazing community, dedicated to the vital need for inclusive stories and the critical role they play in building a better world.

Soraya Chemaly, author of Rage Becomes Her

Field Guide to the North American Teenager is my first novel and FOLD was my first Canadian literary festival. While American and Canadian culture overlap quite a bit, especially when it comes to bookshelves, Canadian literature is unique and I was very heartened by to be embraced by that community I consider home despite residing in the US. It was a homecoming I didn’t know I needed!

Ben Philippe, author of Field Guide to the North American Teenager

The Festival of Literary Diversity was an absolute joy–the organizers thought of *everything* and by anticipating authors’ needs, they freed us to focus on connecting with the audience and each other. There was no pretension, no posturing–just very genuine conversations with invested writers and engaged readers.

Zetta Elliott, author of Dragons in a Bag

I have been to a lot of writers festivals and the FOLD is definitely near the top of the list of those I want to be invited back to.

Harold Johnson, author of the memoirs Clifford and Firewater

Being part of such a clearly diverse, inclusive and mutually respectful group was thrilling and inspiring: a glimpse of a better world.

Kathy Page, author of Dear Evelyn, winner of the 2018 Rogers Writers’ Trust Fiction Prize

Wherever I go in Canada and find another writer of colour, we eventually end up gushing about how great the FOLD is, how by normalizing diversity it liberates us to talk to audiences about craft. It’s hard to imagine the literary landscape returning to a prehistoric pre-FOLD era.

Ian Williams, Author of the Giller Prize-winning novel Reproduction

FOLD is a festival experience unlike any other I’ve had. The FOLD team strive to create a space that’s welcoming and engaging, while allowing for curiosity, ingenuity and the fostering of real community – and they succeed, every year.

Alicia Elliott, author of A Mind Spread Out On The Ground

The FOLD is one of the most important literary events on this continent. By focusing on diverse voices and giving authors space to share their stories and speak their truths, it is revolutionizing the writing and storytelling realm as we know it.

Waubgeshig Rice, author of Moon Of The Crusted Snow

Being part of the FOLD community has provided me with a strong sense of belonging. Sharing diverse stories and listening to different voices that broaden my understanding of the world has impacted me as a person and motivated me as a writer.

Ann Y.K. Choi, author of Kay’s Lucky Coin Variety

Stay Informed

Sign up for our newsletter