Hani Abdile is a writer and spoken word poet who fled the civil war in Somalia. She made her way to Australia by boat and spent 11 months on Christmas Island. While detained, Hani found healing in writing poetry. She is an honorary member of PEN, a lead writer for the Writing Through Fences group, and has received numerous awards for her community work and many achievements since being released from immigration detention. Her first book I Will Rise was published in 2016 to critical acclaim.
Hani will be featuring at the Panel: Feminism in Poetry - What it's like being a woman who can speak.
Fergus Bailey is a 20 year old singer-songwriter from Sydney, Australia who performs original folk music in the style of Bob Dylan and Leonard Cohen, blended with noise rock and shoegaze in the style of The Jesus and Mary Chain and My Bloody Valentine.
Fergus will be featuring at the Australian Poetry Slam - Sydney Slam Final.
Georgia Chapman, winner of Parramatta's Rumble 2017, has only just started out on her poetry adventures and is incredibly excited to see where her new passion will take her. She can be found reading or writing in her home in the Blue Mountains, or advocating for human rights.
Georgia will be featuring at the Australian Poetry Slam - National Final.
Sarah Anne Connor
Sarah Connor is a hip-hop artist and poet whose love of lyricism drives her music and live performance. Triple J Unearthed feature artist, 2015 APRAAMCOS and Hilltop Hooods Initiative winner and soon to play at this years Sprung Festival.
Sarah will be featuring at the Panel: Feminism in Poetry - What it's like being a woman who can speak.
Annaliese Constable is a writer and performer working across standup, storytelling and theatre. Renowned for self-deprecating works Annaliese has been a regular contributor to the Australian comedy and storytelling scenes. Annaliese Constable grows world breaking nipple hairs, gets angry a lot and is available for babysitting.
Annaliese will be featuring at Guffaw.
Current Australian Poetry Slam Champion, Arielle Cottingham is an Afro-Latina poet, performance artist, and dancer. She began performing spoken word in 2014 while studying at the University of Melbourne. In September 2015, she began a career as a full-time working performance poet, as well as creative producer of Slamalamadingdong. She published a chapbook in 2017, The Tarantist's Soapbox. Her first full book of poetry Black and Ropy was published in July 2017 with Pitt St. Poetry. She currently lives in San Antonio, Texas, but is touring NSW from Aug 5 – Oct 15th.
Arielle's writing probes the territory of the personal as the political, dealing heavily with themes of identity, heritage, history, and the roles they play in immediate, everyday interactions. Her performances incorporate elements of dance and physical theatre to create multidisciplinary pieces that have been described as both elegant and profoundly moving.
Emily Crocker writes and performs poetry. You might have seen her at BAD!SLAM!, Noted Festival, Unspoken Words, or Word in Hand. Emily can also be found at Enough Said Poetry Slam in Wollongong or studying at the University of Wollongong. Her debut chapbook 'Girls and Buoyant' was recently published by Subbed In.
Emily will be featuring at Queerhyme.
Sabrina D'Angelo is a theatre-maker, performer and puppeteer. Recent credits: Why Do I Dream? (Winner - Best Comedy, NZ Fringe), Zen the Pigeon Girl (Rock Surfers) and 69S (Phantom Limb Company, BAM, NYC). She’s currently a resident of the Belvoir Artist Workshop. Sabrina is also a Clown Doctor in children's hospitals.
Sabrina will be featuring at Guffaw.
Benny Eggmolesse is an Aboriginal Sydney-based Comedian, raised in Mount Isa and tanned in Townsville. His quick wit, charisma, and ferociously honest style of comedy has earned him runner up in the 2016 Deadly Funny – National Finals and touring with the Aboriginal Comedy Club. Benny’s cultural heritage is at the core of his stand-up and his unique ability to address the Aboriginal Elephant in Australia’s historical living room is why he is quickly becoming one of Australia’s rising Aboriginal comedians.
Benny will be featuring at Guffaw.
Anna Forsyth is the founder and convenor of the feminist poetry reading series, Girls on Key and works as an editor for the independent small publisher, General Chaos, focusing on female-identifying, LGBTQIA+ and gender non-conforming poets. Her poems have appeared in Poetry NZ, Landfall, FourW and other journals.
Anna will be hosting the Panel: Feminism in Poetry - What it's like being a woman who can speak.
HipHopHoe is on high rotation in the queer club scene, having played with all of the major names. Although her first love is hip-hop, expect the unexpected. She spans genres, decades, moods and sounds in one giant leg-spread. She has a residency on the 3rd Friday of the month at The Bearded Tit in Redfern, and co-promotes an underground club event called Semi//Detached with DJ crookedmouth.
HipHopHoe will be featuring at Spoken Four.
Gabrielle Journey Jones
Gabrielle Journey Jones is a co-Founder and CEO (Creativity Encouragement Officer) of Creative Womyn Down Under, a community initiative since 2006 in Sydney which helps to connect women and creativity. Gabrielle has been passionate about using spoken word performance poetry and drumming to raise social issues for over 20 years.
2017 has already been a year of dynamic community collaborations for Gabrielle. She joined the Red Room Company to deliver poetry workshops in schools in NSW. Red Room is committed to making "poetry a meaningful part of everyday life". Gabrielle also became a member of the South Coast Writers CentreBoard of Management. Gabrielle contributed to the Unspoken Words festival this year and will be one of the Artistic Directors in 2018.
Creativity as social, political and personal action is the cornerstone of Gabrielle's work as a Poet and Percussionist.
Gabrielle will be featuring in Queerhyme and the Panel: Feminism in Poetry - What it's like being a woman who can speak.
Ian Keteku is a two-time Canadian National Slam Champion and the 2010 World Poetry Slam champion.
Keteku showcases his poetry and art all over the world and shares stages with some of the biggest names in music and literature. He uses his voice to inspire messages of peace, action and critical thought.
Ian Keteku is also a multi-media artist, producing thought-provoking poetic films.
He conducts poetry, writing and performance workshops for students of all ages, inspiring people to accept the power of their own voice.
Sukhjit Kaur Khalsa
Sukhjit Kaur Khalsa is a first-generation Australian-Sikh spoken word artist, educator, performer and human rights reformer based in Melbourne.
Khalsa is passionate about diversity and the importance of visibility in the performing arts and inherently merges her advocacy background with the arts.
Her work predominantly provokes conversations around Australian identity, feminism, cultural confusions and the power of uncomfortable conversations.
Within a short period, Khalsa has gone from performing at the Sydney Opera House for the Australian Poetry Slam competition in 2014 to performing on national television for Australia’s Got Talent. Most recently, she was a speaker at TedxUWA. Her performances and workshops have led her to tour across Australia, to the US, Canada, UK and Southeast Asia. As well as working on her own arts practice, she currently works at Multicultural Arts Victoria as the project coordinator for Common Ground.
John Maddox is a well-known eccentric Bass player. He plays mostly Acoustic Bass Guitars, and has played for 16 years with all sorts of music and musicians. He can be a one man show or play in groups, with his chordal bass playing and kazoo.
John will be featuring at the Australian Poetry Slam - NSW Final.
DJ Meem is a celebrated music producer, DJ, radio host and designer, who is credited as a pioneer in electronic music making in Australia. He hosts Australia's longest running funk music radio show "Back to Funk" on 2ser 107.3, and has performed at many iconic Australian venues and some of the countries biggest music festivals including Big Day Out, Sydney Festival and Vivid.
Meem will be featuring at the Spoken Four: School Performance.
Fran Middleton is an actor/improviser turned weirdo stand-up comic (nominated for Best Independent Show MICF 2017). Originally from Perth, she crossed the divide to 'discover new artistic horizons' (read: escape!) and now draws from her roots in contemporary performance to dish up an unexpected style of involuntary-enjoyment-noise-provoking comedy.
Fran will be featuring at Guffaw.
Candy Royalle is a performance artist and poet who fuses cinematic storytelling, poetry and unique vocal rhythms with confronting, political and heart thumping content. She tackles topics ranging from sexual obsession to social injustice, illuminating the darker areas of the human psyche for her audiences. Few who see her can forget her intensity, her combustible blend of intellect, imagination and heart. In Australia, Royalle is a festival veteran – from the Woodford Folk Festival to the Tasmanian Poetry Festival, the Sydney Writers Festival to the Adelaide Fringe Festival to name just a small few. Her work has been published and featured both in publications and online including Overland, Australian Love Poems, RN’s Poetica, AIPF’s Diversity anthology and many more.
Multi-award winning poet Philip Wilcox is the 2015 Australian Poetry Slam Champion and a two-time NSW Poetry Slam Champion. He has featured in major events like Sydney Writers' Festival, Wollongong Writers' Festival and Newtown Festival, where he performed for a crowd of over 8 000. Philip headlined the Melbourne event Voices in the Attic and represented NSW against Victoria in an interstate exhibition slam.
Philip is also a playwright. He co-wrote and directed Thursday - the most popular production of the 2013 Sydney Fringe Comedy Festival.
Philip will be co-hosting Spoken Four.
Troy Wong is an English teacher by day, a spoken word poet by night, and an Australian Poetry Slam national finalist forever. When he isn't poeting or covered in children, he likes to take pictures of fruit.
Troy will be hosting the Australian Poetry Slam - Sydney Slam Final.