We’re welcoming back some PPF alumni and some new faces for PPF 2012. In no particlar order,  below are some of the talented poets, artists, musicians and performers taking part in the 2012 People’s Poetry Festival:

Jen Kunlire: 2012 Poet of Honour

Jen Kunlire is a Calgary- based spoken word artist, singer and teller of stories. For the past five years, she has been involved in the Slam & Spoken Word Community across Canada.

Past festivals include, 2-time member of the Calgary Slam Team competing in the Canadian Festival of Spoken Word- Calgary/08 & Victoria /09, a three time feature in the Calgary International Spoken Word Festival, High Performance Rodeo’s 10 Minute Play Festival (ETC), OFF-Fil festival in Montreal, winner of the 2009 CBC Poetry Face-OFF in Calgary, 100 Thousands Poets for Change  in Toronto and recently placed 4th in the Canadian Individual Poetry Slam Championships in Vancouver.

She has featured at slams in Halifax, Guelph, Regina, Vancouver and Saskatoon. As this years 2012 Calgary Slam Team coach, Jen also chair’s the Ink Spot Collective who organizes monthly poetry slams. She can be found facilitating workshops through Unity Charity as an Artist Educator and is the Director of Communications for Ellipsis Tree Collective. You can find her work on http://jenkunlire.blogspot.ca/.
Look for Jen headlining a number of events Friday through Sunday, including Under the Influence of Poetry (Part 1) on Friday and closing the 2012 festival in front of The Plaza Sunday at 4:00pm.

Sheri-D Wilson: The “Mama of Dada”

Sheri-D Wilson has 8 collections of poetry, her most recent; Goddess Gone Fishing for a Map of the Universe (1st book of poetry with interactive QR Codes) launched in 2012. Her collection Re:Zoom, won the 2006 Stephan G. Stephansson Award for Poetry, and was shortlisted for the CanLit Award.  She has 2 CDs and 4 award-winning Video-Poems produced for BravoFACT, and is a regular on CBC & ckua radio.

In 2011 she edited, The Spoken Word Workbook: inspiration from poets who teach, with a connected interactive website. Way back when, she attended Naropa, Jack Kerouac School of Disembodied Poetics, & still practices Buddhism.

In 2009 CBC called her one of the Top 10 Poets in Canada—she’s performed the world: Bath Mix Symposium, Poetry Africa, Vancouver International Writers Festival, Montreal’s Blue Met, NYC’s Bowery Club, maelstrÖm Brussels, Taos Circus, Bumbershoot. In 2003 she won the USA Heavyweight title for poetry, and in 2006 The National Slam of Canada presented her with the Poet of Honour Award.

Founder/ Artistic Director/Producer:  Calgary Spoken Word Festival, since 2004.
Founder/ Director: Spoken Word Program @ Banff Centre, since 2007.

Watch for Sheri-D at our Friday night Under the Influence of Poetry (Part 1), Market Collective and Youth Open Mic on Saturday at The House Coffee Sanctuary.

Midnight Yoga for Alcoholics: featuring the 2012 Golden Beret winner, Kirk Miles, and Midnight Yoga for Alcoholics. To enrol for classes take these three simple steps:

Step One. Grab a back porch gut-bucket of blues. The kind that creeps out of the Mississippi delta like a snake tongued slide guitar. The label should read old school and include equal chunks of stone hoodoo, nightshade, and ghost trains.

Step Two. In to the bucket blend in the modern cadences of incisive spoken word. Make sure that you can taste the city.

Step Three. How to serve. Garnish with a jazzed penny whistle. Age for at least five decades and serve cold. You are now enrolled in sound fusion. You are making the culture with words. As old as the poet and as new as the microphone.

Welcome to midnight yoga for alcoholics.
Midnight Yoga for Alcoholics will be headliing our Under the Influence of Poetry (Part 2): Drunken Poets Night Friday at 9pm (location TBA).

Death by Pedestrian: Death by Pedestrian is a politically charged, neo-vaudville, spoken word duo. A couple of clean-cut Canadian man-boys out to upset the apple-cartel of contemporary polyticks and modern masculinity, Chris Masson and Dave Eso will stop in at the PPF in the midst of the TransCanada CrossWalk tour which has gone from Montreal to NYC to Vancouver.

Watch for Death by Pedestrian at our Poetry Cabaret Saturday evening, and on our outdoor mic in front of The Plaza and in Market Collective over the weekend.

Wakefield Brewster: Performing in a musical capacity since age 6 and writing for the past 20years, Wakefield Brewster, aka: `da lyrical pitbull´, has made his dynamic presence on the scene with no uncertain terms. Writing in a political and lyrical voice and performing with audaciousness yet unseen, he has blasted onto nearly 1000 stages in the past 10 years. One of the country´s mostrenowned poets, he can be experienced literally everywhere. His poetry is in print and online, not to mention that he performs prolifically, rotating between open mics, feature performances, fundraisers, political functions and multimedia exhibitions.  
*2011 Poet of Honour
Wakefield will be hosting and performing at our Poetry Cabaret Saturday evening at The Legion with additional performances on our outdoor mic in front of The Plaza and Market Collective Saturday and Sunday.

Weyman Chan: Weyman is a Calgary-based poet whose writings have appeared in many Alberta anthologies over the last 2 decades. He won the Stephan. G Stephansson Award for his first book of poetry, Before a Blue Sky Moon. He was a finalist for the Governor General’s Literary Award and the Acorn-Plantos People’s Poet Award for his second book of poetry, Noise From the Laundry. His latest book of poems, Chinese Blue, is a meditative search for peace in a world of “famine, polar meltdown, carbon crdits and the massive production of media trivia”. 
Watch for Weyman at our Under the Influence of Poetry (Part 1) Friday evening and at our outdoor mic in front of The Plaza and in Market Collective Saturday and Sunday.

Andre Prefontaine: Andre is one of Calgary’s top emerging spoken word artists. He’s performed as part of the Montreal Fringe Festival, the Calgary Spoken word festival and many others. He’s a two time member of the Calgary slam team and top 20 in the Canadian individual slam championships. So grab a seat and  catch him in the act, you’ll be glad you did.  
Andre will be headlining our Adults Only reading Saturday afternoon at The BottleHouse, and will be appearing at our Poetry Cabaret Saturday evening at The Legion.

Bob Stallworthy: Bob has been writing and publishing poetry and nonfiction for 27 years. He has four books of poetry published and one nonfiction e-book, In Silhouette: Profiles of Alberta Writers. His poetry was short listed for the W.O. Mitchell City of Calgary Book Prize in 2004 and 2009. In 2009 his poetry was short listed for the Stephan G. Stephansson Award for Poetry. In 2002 he was the co-recipeint of the City of Calgary Freedom of Expression Award. He is a Lifetime member of the Writers Guild of Alberta, a member of The Writers Union of Canada and a member of the Young Alberta Book Society. 
Bob will be hosting our Sunday afternoon workshop, Giving a Public Reading, at Oolong Tea House and will be reading at our Under the Influence of Poetry (Part 1) on Friday evening at Pages Books on Kensington.

Richard Harrison: Richard is the author of six books of poetry, among them Big Breath of a Wish, nominated for the Governor-General’s Award for poetry, and Hero of the Play , the first book of poetry launched at Toronto’s Hockey Hall of Fame. His writing has been published and broadcast around the continent and been translated into French, Portuguese, Spanish and Arabic. He has also worked as an editor for several publishing houses, including Wolsak and Wynn, the Banff Centre Press and, most recently, Calgary’s own Frontenac House, for which he edited the 2011 Quartet. He teaches English and Creative Writing at Mount Royal University.
Richard will be hosting our Sunday afternoon workshop, Getting Published, at Oolong Tea House and will be reading at our Under the Influence of Poetry (Part 1) on Friday evening at Pages Books on Kensington.

Diane Guichon: Diane is a M.A. graduate from the University of Calgary’s Creative WritingProgram.  Her first book of poetry Birch Split Bark (published by Nightwood Editions) was awarded the City of Calgary W.O.Mitchell 2007 Book Prize. Diane teaches English Literature and AcademicWriting for the University of Lethbridge (Calgary Campus) and recently completed a two year residency as the University of Calgary’s Writer-in-the-Schools Program at Queen Elizabeth High School.  Diane is a poetry instructor for Wordsworth’s Kamp Kiwanis for young writers. Her poetry, book reviews and interviews with other poets have been published in various Canadian literary magazines.
Look for Diane’s poetry in our Poetric Graffiti art walk Saturday and Sunday.

DJ Scootz: Add a bit of Groovy Into Your Life!

DJ Scootz has been involved with music for as long as he can remember. A musician since the age of six, he has played in numerous bands through the years; from swing and r&b to 70’s and 80’s, top 40, jazz and latin, he’s done it all! He started his dj life early as well, making mix tapes for parties in high school and university, continuing and expanding that experience to his dj life today. He truly enjoys sharing his genuine love of music with his audience, and it shows!

His musical influences and interests vary equally widely, from latino to lounge, cocktail to rock, retro to today’s club hits! Whether obscure or top of the charts, if there is a song you want, he likely has it!
DJ Scootz will be providing the musical backdrop at our Under the Influence of Poetry (Part 1) Friday evening at Pages Books on Kensington.

Micah O’Connell and Delia Macpherson: Micah O’Connell (guitar/vocals) and Delia Macpherson (fiddle) are a long way from home. They recently moved to West Coast of Canada from Nova Scotia to play original music. Currently based out of Calgary, they are performing across Alberta and BC. Delia and Micah met in Halifax where their friendship quickly blossomed over a love of music and performance. They have collaborated on everything from folk ballads to rock and roll and have appeared together on stages across Canada. Micah’s debut album “Big Mouth and the Old Oak” was released in April of 2011.
Micah and Delia will be performing at our outdoor mic in front of The Plaza Sunday afternoon at 2:00pm

Miss Marla Muse: Miss Marla Muse loves the glamorous side of life. Her inspiration as a burlesque dancer comes from Bettie Page and Dita Von Teese. She loves sequins, fishnet stockings, corsets, and most of all rhinestones and glitter. Everything she does has a touch of sparkle and sass. She fell in love with burlesque about 2 and a half years ago when she saw how much fun you can have and how amazing the costumes can be. She is also the 2012 Miss Taboo Calgary and is the newest member of Butterfly Circus Burlesque Calgary. Miss Muse has a passion for food and baking and loves anything sweet. She also has a geeky side and enjoys blowing up zombies, watching X-wings, Sci-Fi, and relaxing with her man and her fur balls. You can find out more about her on her Facebook page.
Don’t miss Marla heating up our stage at Poetry Cabaret on Saturday evening.

Linnet: Musician. Writer. Existential lightweight. She enjoy poetry and coffee and other sickeningly stereotypical artsy things. Check out her musical stylings on YouTube.
Linnet will be performing at our Poetry Cabaret on Saturday evening at The Legion.

Tiffany Sostar: Tiffany is a queer, sex-positive feminist and activist. Her company, Writing in the Margins, offers safe, inclusive workshops where participants can explore issues of desire, fantasy, identity and orientation. She is the founder of Possibilities: Calgary Bisexual/Pansexual Community, and a student at the U of C. She is a goth on the inside and a community-building activist on the outside.

Tiffany will be hosting our Erotica Writing Workshop Saturday afternoon at Resolution Art Gallery.

Steph Wong Ken: Steph is a writer and editor based in Calgary. She has a BA in Creative Writing from Concordia University in Montreal, and her work has appeared in Soliloquies, Headlight Anthology, and Ribbon Pig.

Steph will be reading at the filling Station Showcase on Saturday evening at The Legion.

Angelo Ramirez: Angelo is a gentleman and part time scholar. He enjoys Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, cafe wandering, and people watching. Sometimes he writes poems.
Angelo will be reading at the filling Station Showcase on Saturday evening at The Legion.

Emily Ursuliak:
Emily grew up in the rolling countryside north of Sylvan Lake, Alberta, but moved to Calgary last fall to pursue an MA in English at the University of Calgary where she’s writing her first novel as well as her first collection of poems.  When she’s not banging her head in frustration on her keyboard she also enjoys gardening, wrestling with her dog sidekick Tilly, and tribal fusion belly dancing.

Emily will be reading at the filling Station Showcase on Saturday evening at The Legion.

Jon R. Flieger: Jon’s work has appeared in journals and anthologies including The Malahat Review, Matrix, Kiss Machine, The Danforth Review, The Windsor Review, filling Station, and Momaya Press Fiction Annual 2011. His short fiction won the 2011 Norma Epstein national award and is shortlisted for the Howard O’ Hagan Short Fiction Alberta Literary Award. His first book of poetry, Never Sleep with Anyone from Windsor (Black Moss P, 2007), won the Southwesto Orison award. He is from Windsor and now lives in Calgary where he teaches and serves as fiction editor of filling Station. He is afraid of bees.
Jon will be reading at the filling Station Showcase on Saturday evening at The Legion.

Caitlynn Cummings: Caitlynn has an MSc in Creative Writing from the University of Edinburgh and writes poetry, fiction, and drama. She is also the Managing Editor of filling Station and the Coordinator of the Calgary Distinguished Writers Program. Her work can be found in Drey, Two in the Bush, Migratory Words, Cordite Poetry Review, ditch, and everywhere else you least expect it. Follow her on Twitter @Tartaned_Maple.

Caitlynn will be reading at the
filling Station Showcase on Saturday evening at The Legion.

Ian Kinney: Ian works towards his Master’s Degree in English at the University of Calgary. As an undergraduate student at the U of C, Ian was the Managing Editor of the student run NōD Magazine. He was an assistant coordinator for Calgary’s first annual People’s Poetry Festival in 2011 and is currently the Assistant Poetry Editor of filling Station Magazine. His creative work appears in the 2nd Book of Cowtown Poetry, The Gauntlet, Laser magazine, filling Station magazine, and a variety of small presses in Calgary.
Ian will be reading at the filling Station Showcase on Saturday evening at The Legion.

Jenna Shummoogum: Jenna graduated from the Haskayne School of Business with her bachelor of commerce in 2009. She started her arts career with Swallow A Bicycle Theatre and now is the Executive Director of La Caravan Dance Theatre. She is a connector and has a passion for narrative within all creative forms. She is a writer, reviewing theatre and dance around the city. She works in the Alberta political sphere for local MLA Dr. David Swann, and also does marketing and publicity contracts to various arts organizations. When she isn’t doing all that she also writes poetry. Her first reading was at Wrecking Ball in 2011, and she makes an effort to be a member of the collective at filling Station magazine.
Look for Jenna’s poetry in our Poetric Graffiti art walk Saturday and Sunday.

Nancy Marie Bell: Nancy lives near Balzac, Alberta with her husband and various critters. She is a member of The Writers Union of Canada and the Writers Guild of Alberta. She enjoys writing poetry and fiction and non-fiction. Nancy is an editor with MuseItUp Publishing Inc. Please visit her webpage http://www.nancymbell.ca. You can also find her on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/NancyMBell and Twitter: @emilypikkasso

Look for Nancy’s poetry in our Poetric Graffiti art walk Saturday and Sunday.

Dale A Herrington: Dale A Herrington has been a fixture in the Calgary underground poetry scene since the mid-eighties, his first published pieces appearing in “dandelion magazine” in 1986. Dale is the publisher producer for RAW Salvage Ltd.and posts a weekly pod cast that can be found at http://calgaryspokenword.podbean.com/ . He compiles, and designs the monthly chap book “ REAL LIFE” (spoken words and poets) He is a member of the Single Onion Board, Most Vocal Poets Society of Lethbridge, co-ordinates the South Country Fair’s Lotos Land stage, collaborates with, Calgary International Spoken Word Festival, Filling Station, The Calgary Drop-In Center and almost anyone who is interested in promoting Alberta poetry and the spoken word genre. This now includes the Peoples Poetry Festival. Dale lives, reads and writes in Calgary.
Dale will be performing at our outdoor mic in front of The Plaza on Sunday afternoon.

Shannon McClennan: Shannon is a born-and-raised Calgarian. A writer/poet with a Master of Arts in International Journalism and a mild handbag obsession, she spends her weekdays as a Communications Coordinator for a global financial firm and fills her evenings and weekends with everything else. A documentary film junkie, arts/[pop] culture aficionado, social media enthusiast and wannabe artist/photographer, you’ll find her running marketing and communications for The People’s Poetry festival, blogging for the Calgary International Film Festival and generally not sleeping very much. She also tweets YYC arts/culture/lit events (and the occasional poem) via @shannoetry
Shannon will be performing our Kids-Approved Shel Silverstein reading at the outdoor mic in front of The Plaza at 12:00 noon on Sunday. Look for her artwork our Poetic Graffiti art walk Saturday and Sunday.

Bryan McLean: Canadian artist, poet, & musician, Bryan McLean is author of several online collections, such as “The Syndrome Papers” and “(1)ne Night Stand”. He is constantly creating new content and you can access his ongoing annual project “100Days of Poetry”,  his production as a recording artist under the title, Corbae, all through his design work for Lyinghere.com.

Bryan will be performing at our outdoor mic in front of The Plaza and in Market Collective Saturday and Sunday. Look for his artwork in our Poetic Graffiti art walk Saturday and Sunday.

Jennifer Sterne: Learning to refocus on the importance that writing plays in her life, Jennifer Sterne has recently dedicated herself to refining her craft and to looking for opportunities to put forth her works in competitions and publications.  Amid the countless roles that she enjoys, her identification as a writer has proven to be a life-time passion.  Always endeavoring to check off items from her own ever-changing ‘life list’, if Jennifer could ask you just one question, it would probably be: what was your last adventure… and what will be your next?
Look for Jennifer’s poetry in our Poetic Graffiti art walk Saturday and Sunday.

Bruce Strand: Bruce is a poet and English teacher.  He has had poetry published in assorted literary journals and anthologies, including the recently launched As One Cradles Pain, an anthology exploring disorders by Ascent Aspirations Publishing 2012. 

Look for Bruce’s poetry in our Poetic Graffiti art walk Saturday and Sunday.

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