Was Ist Ein Poetry Slam

Poetry slams are a fascinating way for poets to use their work to tell stories, provide commentary, and entertain audiences. They are structured competitions where poets perform original works in front of judges and an audience who will then rate them using a scale of zero to ten. The poet with the highest combined score from their judges and audience is the winner.

The history of poetry slams can be traced back to 1986 in Chicago when Marc Smith, a construction worker, organized the first Poetry Slam at the Get Me High Lounge. Through the event, Smith wanted to give poets an outlet to express their works in an entertaining and engaging way. Today, poetry slams have grown in popularity in almost every major city throughout the United States and abroad.

When you attend a poetry slam, you will see individuals of all cultures and ages in the audience and on stage. This atmosphere is unique because it allows poets to share their experiences and messages with a diverse and accepting audience. The topics covered in the slams range from mental health, gender rights, and racism, to the joys and tragedies of love and family life.

Accompanied with the extravagant performance, the tone of each slam differs drastically. Poems can be quiet and melancholic, or loud and defiant with intense themes. The performances give poets the opportunity to express their thoughts and experiences from their own perspectives.

Poetry slam judges are chosen before the start of the competition, and are responsible for providing the score for each poet’s performance. Judges evaluate each poem for its delivery, content, and emotion. Judges must be fair, objective, and mindful of their bias and judgements. The crowd also adds to the overall mix, with the applause and cheers they give each participant- and the audience score is then combined with the judges score to determine the winner.

Aside from the event experience, poetry slams can be a great way to study modern language, culture, and storytelling. They provide a form of public discourse which is most definitely reflective of the collective communal consciousness and allows the listener to gain a better understanding of current social issues.

In the world of slam poetry, there are no rules and no limits. Although the structure of a poetry slam encourages the use of free verse and short lines, poets can play with rhythm and rhyme. The main goal of participating in a poetry slam is to produce something extraordinary, and to display that through a dynamic performance.

Balkan Poetry Slam

The Balkan Poetry Slam, or BALKANSLAM as it is often called, is a renowned slam poetry competition held annually in Bulgaria, Serbia, and Macedonia. It was founded in 2004 and is the first of its kind, bringing together creative and passionate wordsmiths from all over the Balkans. This unique poetry slam continues to bring together inspiring poets from all around the region, creating a platform for contemporary voices.

For those who are interested in participating in BALKANSLAM, there are no limits to the poem’s length, rhythm or style. Poets have the opportunity to use their own words and rhythm to captivate the imagination of the audience and judges. The winner of BALKANSLAM is awarded a prize consisting of money, a certificate, and the opportunity to participate in an international poetry event.

Previous winners at the Balkan Poetry Slam have gone on to become successful authors, poets, and artists. Therefore, the competition is a great opportunity for young aspiring poets to develop their craft, meet with established and emerging poets, share ideas, and network.

Virtual Poetry Slams

The emergence of COVID-19 necessitated the cancellation of in-person poetry slams, yet the rise of virtual slams compensated for this. Several virtual slam organizers transcended through space and time to create online platforms, where poets could perform their work to an international audience.

Using technology as a tool, poets were enabled with the flexibility to enter any poem slam competition regardless of location. Virtual slams created a space for poets to connect with international audiences, without having to leave the comfort of their own home. These virtual platforms even allowed poets to create additional opportunities to make a living from the art inways thatwere not available before.

Although virtual slams maintain the same atmosphere, the use of multimedia such as music and videos add another level of insight that poets can use to tell their story. The incorporation of technology in poetry slams has made them accessible during times when physical events have been canceled. Virtual slams also have the potential to become a recognized form of modern performance art, accessible to all around the world.


Organizers of slam poetry competitions often make use of the various virtual platforms available. These platforms provide presenter and audience members alike with an effective and efficient way to virtually attend and participate in poetry slams.

The most popular platform for virtual poetry slams is Zoom. Zoom provides excellent audio and video quality and a large selection of features. This makes it the ideal platform for poetry slams, as it allows organizers to easily host events and poets to showcase their poetry in an interactive and engaging way. Other popular platforms used by slam poets include Skype and YouTube.

Given the wide variety of platforms available, organizers can also get creative and use multiple platforms as part of their slam events. For example, presenting competitions or performances on YouTube or Vimeo, while having live chat or Q&A on Skype or Zoom.

Pros and Cons

Organizing virtual slams can bring several benefits, such as allowing poets to reach larger audiences, providing the flexibility to host slam events from home, and reducing the overall costs of hosting them. However, some factors worth taking into account when considering virtual slams include the need for reliable high speed internet, time differences for international competitions, and the lower quality sound and video.

In addition to these factors, there are other considerations that can be taken into account in order to improve the experience. For example, providing the option for poets to practice their performance with the use of virtual tools, and for the organizer to set up and test the technology prior to the event to ensure a smooth and successful slam.

Overall, virtual slams provide great opportunities for poets to showcase their work, and an excellent option for organizers who want to host slam events virtually.


Virtual slam poetry competitions take place all over the world. They vary in style, format, and the rules that govern them. A few popular virtual slams are The World Stage,The Virtual Poetry Slam (VPS) and The United States Virtual Poetry Slam (USVPS).

The World Stage (TWS) is an online poetry competition for poets seeking recognition for their work by entering a global stage full of talented wordsmiths. Unlike traditional in-person slams, TWS provides an outlet for poets to express themselves beyond language and geographic boundaries. Furthermore, in order to promote inclusion, TWS allows poets to compete in virtual teams based on language, location and interests. This type of jam-packed competition is a great way to gain experience, build skills and refine techniques.

The Virtual Poetry Slam (VPS) is a global online platform that connects poets from around the world and allows them to compete in online poetry slams. VPS brings together writers from all backgrounds and encourages them to share and discuss their language and culture. VPS also provides poets with the opportunity to grow their audience and gain feedback from a global community.

The USVPS is a competition for poets based in the United States that welcomes poets from all levels, from beginner to expert. USVPS provides poets with the chance to compete in slams from the comfort and safety of their own home. USVPs offers several competition series and also provides poets with guidance and support to become better prepared for competition.

Minnie Walters is a passionate writer and lover of poetry. She has a deep knowledge and appreciation for the work of famous poets such as William Wordsworth, Emily Dickinson, Robert Frost, and many more. She hopes you will also fall in love with poetry!

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