Brave New Voices
Disclaimer: Seating is limited at all venues. It's first come first serve. If this show is sold out, there are 9 other performances running concurrently at venues within walking distance in Downtown Berkeley.
For any questions, please contact our Program Associate, Brandon Santiago at firstname.lastname@example.org. PLEASE DO NOT CONTACT THE VENUE.
Brave New Voices (BNV) was created by Youth Speaks, Inc in 1998 after the inaugural Youth Speaks Teen Poetry Slam in San Francisco—the first poetry slam dedicated to youth in the nation’s history. Since that time, Brave New Voices has grown to represent youth from all across the United States and Europe, making it the largest ongoing spoken word event in the world.
Brave New Voices brings together young artists, outspoken activists, educators, poets, and emerging leaders to the San Francisco Bay Area to participate in a celebration and demonstration of free speech, artistic empowerment, and youth voice. We will gather, commune together, speak to and with each other, learn about and from one another – we will speak a new world into being, and we will all be witnesses.
This festival will create forums for dialogue, provide workshops for open and free expression, and facilitate conversations formally and informally that foster artistic and personal growth. BNV pulls together young people from throughout the United States and several international countries who celebrating literature and empower themselves through the written and spoken word. Brave New Voices reflects diversity as a value, crossing and challenging notions of ethnic, racial, and socio-economic division. Brave New Voices is for a generation of young people who reflect a new ethic of mutual respect, cross-cultural communication, sincere expression, social justice and radical love. Brave New Voices is for youth who speak for themselves.
Brave New Voices focuses primarily on the power of young peoples’ voices both on and off the stage. However, each year we develop a sub-theme that runs throughout the festival, and that has emerged from the writings of the poets. We will hear on a National scale, conversations about the future of the country and the world. Brave New Voices is a chance for the next generation to speak about issues of education, detention, immigration, arts, politics and the environments in which we live.
There are many events during the Brave New Voices Festival including:
· The First Wave Show
· Coaches Open Mic
· Opening Ceremonies
· Brave New Voices Writing Workshops
· Brave New Voices Town Hall meeting
· The Peoples Championship (Individual Late-Night Slam Tournament)
· The Brave New Leaders Conference
· The Brave New Teachers Conference
· Life Is Living Environmental Literacy Festival
· Annual BNV MC Olympics
· The International Youth Poetry Slam
· Quarter Finals (Begins with 50 teams)
· Semi Finals (Reserved for 16 teams)
· Finals (Reserved for the final 4 teams)
· Open Mics, Cyphers, and more….
Last year there were 750 participants from over 50 international communities. Participating cities included: San Francisco, New York City, Chicago, Los Angeles, Boston, London, Miami, Washington DC, Atlanta, Philadelphia, Seattle, New Orleans, Detroit, Houston, Oakland, Santa Fe, Portland, Denver, St. Louis, Kansas City, Albuquerque, Hawaii, Hartford, Minneapolis/St. Paul, Phoenix, Nashville, St. Louis, Cleveland, Jacksonville, Charlotte, Madison, Cincinnati, Kansas City, Baton Rouge, Chapel Hill, Milwaukee, Ann Arbor, Ypsilanti, Plymouth, Kalamazoo, Indianapolis, Ft. Lauderdale, Burlington, Newark, Watts, Fontana, Mendocino, Austin, Anchorage, Taos, Chico, Navajo Nation, Hopi Nation, Pueblo Nation, Chimayo, San Jose, Jersey City, Baltimore, Savannah, Mexicalli, Louisville, Amherst, Las Vegas, Eugene Canandaigua, Worcester, Leeds (UK), Mostar (Bosnia).
Thank you to our partners: Downtown Berkeley Association, David Brower Center, Aurora Theatre Company, The Marsh Arts Center, Subterranean Arthouse, YMCA PG&E Teen Center, Hotel Shattuck Plaza, Pegasus Books, and UC Berkeley.