Kent at UniSlam 2018
6 February 2018
UniSlam is the UK National University Poetry Slam and Summit, bringing together teams of poets from university communities across the UK and Ireland to take part in a comprehensive programme of development workshops and to compete in one of the most exciting slams in the British spoken word calendar.
The 2018 event brought together 23 teams from all over the UK and Ireland for a weekend of poetry slams and workshops. This was the first year that the University of Kent had put up a team and we were ably represented by Alice Gretton (SECL and School of Arts), Steven Humber (School of Arts), Katrine Lynn Solvaag (School of English), Calum Collins (School of English), and Ameera-Aftabi Razak (School of Pharmacy). The team was coached by Kent alumni and celebrated performance poet Dan Simpson and under his tutelage they breezed through the preliminary rounds at De Montfort University.
The two rounds of semi-finals were held at the Curve Theatre in Leicester. The quality of the other teams was very high and the team would have been happy to have just progressed that far. During the Kent team's round, two other teams had earned exactly the same score and had to perform an extra poem to decide who came in second and who came in third. Our team feared that they had been beaten into fourth, and were genuinely shocked when it was announced that they had won that section of the competition!
The finals went without a hitch; everyone performed to their best of their abilities and the team's more humorous entries had the judges and audience bawling with laughter. In the end the quality of performances of all finalist teams were excellent and whilst the team from the University of Birmingham event claimed the trophy, the fact that Kent came in at third place on their first year is something of which we should all be rightfully proud.