The Jason Taylor Foundation is calling all high school poets to take part in its cutting edge youth poetry festival, “Louder Than a Bomb Florida,” presented by Nova Southeastern University and UPS. Online registration has officially opened for those wishing to participate. Now in its third year, this highly anticipated event will take place in 2017 from March 27 through April 8.
Dubbed the “Super Bowl of Poetry” and a member of the Omari Hardwick ‘bluapple Poetry Network,’ the festival features a friendly spoken-word competition between school- based poetry teams from across the state. Last April, 37 high schools representing Broward, Miami-Dade, Palm Beach and St. Lucie counties competed, with Boca Raton Community High School’s poetry team, “No Disclaimers,” claiming the top spot.
“Louder Than A Bomb Florida has become one of my favorite events of the year,” said Jason Taylor. “The talent, passion and truth these young people display on stage is nothing short of spectacular, and the love and support they give each other, even from so- called rival schools, makes us realize just how important and necessary this work is. We had nearly 40 schools in the tournament last year and I’m hopeful that number just continues to grow so that more kids can have their voices heard.”
Teachers interested in registering their school’s poetry club or team may do so by visiting www.JasonTaylorFoundation.org, selecting “Programs” and then “Louder Than A Bomb Florida” or by visiting www.bluapplepoetry.org, selecting “LTAB Florida” and then “Online Registration” using the site’s navigation bar (http://bluapplepoetry.org/ltabflorida/online-registration/). At the festival, teams are comprised of four to 10 students, each of whom must be actively enrolled in and attend the school of the team they represent. Students will write and perform original poems individually and as a member of a four-part collaborative team. A $200 registration fee per team is required and registration will remain open until February 3, 2017. For a complete list of rules and guidelines, visit the websites referenced above or http://bluapplepoetry.org/wp-content/up- loads/2016/11/Rules.Guidelines.LTABFLA.2 017.pdf.
Funding from Nova Southeastern University, UPS and a host of other community partners has assisted the Jason Taylor Foundation with supporting the schools’ efforts by providing year-round, in-class and after-school instruction, which will culminate in the 13-day festival.
Louder Than a Bomb Florida features poetry bouts, workshops, exhibits and ultimately the crowning of Florida’s top youth poetry team. The most critical component, however, is the year-round, meaningful instruction with teachers and teaching artists who create and facilitate a safe space for individual and collective expression. To learn more, contact the Jason Taylor Foundation office at 954-424-0799.