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April special guest

Zena Edwards

Tue 3rd Apr Hackney – Book Club
Wed 4th Apr Bristol – Smoke & Mirrors
Thu 5th Apr Brighton – Komedia
Fri 6th Apr Cambridge – Junction
Tue 10th Apr Oxford – Old Fire Station
Wed 11th Apr Southampton – Art House

One of the most popular guests we have had at Hammer & Tongue, Zena is as at home on a music stage as she is on a spoken word one. You may have been lucky enough to see her touring with jazz legends Hugh Masekela & Larry Willis in recent years and if you haven’t seen her deliver one of her impressive spoken sets yet you’re missing out.

Raised in Tottenham, North London, Zena has become renowned for her beautiful voice, skillfully written verse, and versatile acting ability making her a force to be reckoned with for many years in the world performance poetry. She was nominated for the Arts Foundation Award for Performance Poetry 2007, the Jerwood Compton Poetry Fellowship Award 2017, and won the Hidden Creatives Award 2012, for Youth Engagement through the Arts.

Zena has been involved in performance for over 20 years – as a writer/poet performer, and educator. As a poet Zena’s writing for performance explores the creative voice immersed in issues exploring collective and personal revolution in the midst of social injustice and all its intersections.

Her poems articles and blogs for social and environmental justice issues, race and power are published in Open Democracy, Dance the Guns to Silence in Commemoration The Ogoni 9, Platform London’s Blog – Featured in Riots Reframed documentary – Voice Over Films, and Loose Muse New Writing for Women.

The National Slam Final

The Hammer & Tongue National Slam Final is a two-day extravaganza of spoken word.  An array of special guest artists inter-disperse a programme which sees champions from Hammer & Tongue’s own slams and winners of other significant slams compete to take the national title.
Breath-taking diversity of styles and great quality are served up at the finals to the credit of the large and for ever growing friendly community of skillful artists who consistently stun the audience.
One of the most important events in the live literature calendar.

And the winner is:

Usaama Minhas

Team Slam Champions:

Hammer & Tongue Bristol

Golden Hammer Awards:

Jonny Fluffy Punk
Pete the Temp

May Special Guest

Sophia Blackwell

Tue 1st May Hackney – Book Club
Wed 2nd May Bristol – Smoke & Mirrors
Thu 3rd May Brighton – Komedia
Fri 4th May Cambridge – Junction
Tue 8th May Oxford – Old Fire Station
Wed 9th May Southampton – Art House  
Sophia Blackwell is the author of two collections of poetry, Into Temptation and The Fire Eater’s Lover, and one novel, After My Own Heart. Her poetry has been anthologised by Bloodaxe, Nine Arches and The Emma Press. Her third poetry collection will be published this autumn from Burning Eye Books.

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A typically atypical slam performance:

Previous National Slam Champion Solomon OB