Regina Word Up Youth Finals

The Artesian

Regina Word Up Youth Finals

Regina Word Up, Listen to Dis Community Arts Organization and International Institute for Critical Studies in Improvisation (IICSI) present three special, accessible poetry events.

*Please note the location, day of week, and time change for these events. This event begins before our regular poetry events, happens on a Thursday, and take place at the Artesian on 13th.*

Regina Word Up Poetry Slam
Location: Artesian on 13th (2627 13th Ave, Regina, SK, Treaty 4)
Date: Thursday, May 9/19
Price: $5 + GST (or Pay What You Can; Performers don't pay)
All Ages
Elevator Available
All-gendered washroom on site

bassam (they/them or xe/xim) is a spoken word poet, proud auntie, and settler currently residing on the unceded traditional territories of the Musqueam, Squamish, and Tsleil-Waututh First Nations (colonially “Vancouver, Canada”).

they are a member of the League of Canadian Poets, currently serving as National Director of Spoken Word Canada, and have toured Turtle Island performing spoken word.

bassam earned title of national slam champion at the Canadian Festival of Spoken Word (CFSW) in 2016 with the Guelph Poetry Slam team, and Canadian Individual Poetry Slam (CIPS) finalist in 2017.

they are the author of one chapbook and three collections of poetry, two of which released in 2018: ‘bliss in die / unbinging the underglow’ (Swimming with Elephants Publications) and ‘_nil:/per.OS - sepukku|smiles + songs for sarah’ (GenZ Publishing). they were also editor-in-chief and publisher for ‘these pills don’t come in my skin tone’, a spoken word poetry collection exclusively by Black, Indigenous, and People of Colour (BIPOC) on the topic of mental health and illness, released in fall 2017.

a (gender)queer, Jewish person of Middle-Eastern descent and a longtime sufferer of body dysmorphia, bipolar and eating disorders, bassam believes in radical kindness as resistance to colonization, that there is no equity or peace without justice, and that intersectionality is vital in the struggle against kyriarchy

Thank you to our featured performer for their work and dedication. It's deeply appreciated.

Each event takes place on a Thursday at the Artesian on 13th.

Thursday, March 7 – Poetry Slam, Open to anybody, featuring Isaac Bond
Thursday, April 11 – Regina Word Up Adult Team Finals, Invitational Slam, featuring Beth Murch
Thursday, May 9 – Regina Word Up Youth Team Finals, Invitational Slam, Featuring bassam

Schedule of Events
5:30pm Doors Open
5:30pm-6:30pm – Just Write, drop in
7pm – Poetry Slam Youth Finals begin (Two Rounds of slam with Feature Artist performance, Open Mic to follow event. Top 5 poets of the night will make the team.)



Regina Word Up, a program of the Creative City Centre, Listen To Dis community arts organization and the International Institute for Critical Studies in Improvisation (IICSI) are teaming up to bring a series of collaborative, accessible events with an improv element. Through friendly poetry slam and a series of sensory-rich writing prompts, the groups aim to create on the spot poetry and performance elements. These proposed events will incorporate many elements into a phenomenal experience.

We recognize the Creative City Centre is up two long flights of stairs and that these stairs may be a barrier for people interested in participating in our events. By partnering with Listen to Dis community arts organization and the International Institute for Critical Studies in Improvisation we are able to open our community to other poetry enthusiasts and access the Artesian on 13th. The Artesian is a venue fit with an elevator.


Do you ever feel stuck waiting for inspiration to strike? Do you like the idea of writing but have trouble getting started? Do you find it more motivating to be part of a group than to write on your own?

Just Write is an initiative that seeks to melt those writer’s blocks. We’ll focus on process instead of results. We will play with improvisational elements by using prompts, discussions and other tools to get words flowing.

Facilitators from the Regina Word Up community will incorporate their experience with spoken word and/or other forms of writing to build space for learning from ourselves and each other in a supportive, interactive environment.
All levels of experience and participation are welcome. For example, you might prefer to try as many facilitated activities as possible or sit in a corner and work on your own project. You might want to share some of your writing with others or just reflect independently. You might want to play with performance aspects or keep all your work on the page. We will adapt to your interests and what you want to learn.

Just Write is a drop-in event before the Poetry Slam. A short open mic will follow the poetry slam to give you an opportunity to share your work with our attentive audience.

Bring your snapping fingers and applause (all the way to the stage) to cheer on the diverse range of poets we've invited to compete, as we see which of them will represent Regina at the Canadian Festival of Spoken Word (CFSW) in Guelph, ON, in October. Each of our competitors has shared their words and bared their souls on our stage at one slam, at least, in this 2018-19 season. This is one night when the points DO matter, even if they aren't the point (the poetry is the point!)

A poetry slam is a dialogue between audience and performer. It is a competitive event wherein spoken word artists share their work in a high-spirited, fast-paced environment to an often uproarious crowd.

Slammers will come prepared with two original (that is, your own) pieces of less than 3 minutes and 10 seconds each. No props, no nudity, no hate speech.

Five judges will be chosen at random from the audience. Each judge will provide a score between 1-10 for each poem, of the five scores, the high and low will be dropped leaving a total score out of 30. The judges will judge the poem and performance but not the poet or appearance.

Audience members, come prepared with snapping fingers and a good pair of lungs.


By participating in our poetry slam’s, you may become eligible to compete for a spot on the Regina Word Up Poetry Slam team (23+) or the Regina Word Up Youth Poetry Slam Team. (14-22) This team will travel to compete in the national spoken word festival(s) for youth or adults. The Adult Canadian Festival of Spoken Word (CFSW) takes place in Guelph, ON during October. The Youth festival, Voices of Today, takes place in Toronto, ON, August 20-24/19. Youth may be shortlisted to compete for the youth poetry slam team by participating in one poetry slam or at one of our Youth Stage events.


If you are interested in volunteering, sponsoring, supporting, collaborating or have ideas that may benefit Regina Word Up and the development of our spoken word communities, please contact the Creative City Centre at


At the Creative City Centre we always strive for inclusivity and respect in the community both inside and out of our facility, which is why we have compiled the following guidelines to remember both for our events and also in everyday life.

• We encourage respecting the way folks self identify, without assuming gender, sexuality, orientation, religion, or ability.
• We understand that at times folks may need to leave or engage in other methods of self-care, and that’s okay. If we can keep ourselves safe, we can encourage safe and healthy communities.
• We encourage the availability of gender-neutral washrooms for all guests.
• We encourage language that promotes inclusivity, education, and awareness and dislike all forms of explicit ignorance including, but not limited to, hate speech, racism, homophobia, transphobia, and classism.
• We encourage the culture of consent meaning we respect people’s physical, verbal, and emotional boundaries. This means respecting that some people might not want to be hugged and if you want to engage physically in any way with a person it is important to ask permission before doing so.

Regina Word Up would like to extend a deep thank you to our partners and sponsors. Without this support, this programming would not be possible.

Thank you especially to the Creative City Centre, Listen to Dis Community Arts Organization, International Institute of Critical Studies in Improvisation and to the Saskatchewan Arts Board, City of Regina, Department of Canadian Heritage and the Canada Council for the Arts.

For more information on programs and opportunities, please visit

Listen to Dis:

International Institue of Critical Studies in Improvisation: