The NYU Brademas Center and NYU Government Affairs celebrated the signing of the U.S. Constitution with a spoken word and poetry slam. Constitution Day, also known as Citizenship Day, is an American federal observance that recognizes the adoption of the United States Constitution (September 17, 1787) and those who have become U.S. citizens.
NYU Students, faculty/staff as well as local community members were invited to submit a video of their performance inspired by the U.S. Constitution. 8 finalists were selected to perform their piece on Monday, September 18, 2017 in Eisner & Lubin Auditorium, Kimmel Center for Student Life. Three winners, Christina Gayton, J. Metje, and Lauren Nguyen were selected and each received a $100 prize.
The Constitution Day Slam engaged the NYU and local community and provided a platform for individuals to share their talents and voices. Participants expressed themselves creatively and respectfully.
Jester. Philosopher. Poet...Advocate Of Wordz is a writer & performer who prides himself on teaching kids how to talk their way out of detention and sharing his own personal skewed perception of what is in front of us all. Raised in the Bronx between one of the seediest neighborhoods and affluent communities, he began fashioning the English language in an attempt to bridge the duality of his world. His articulate measures have since evolved into a perverse eloquence that has led him to be referred to as 'incomparable' and has afforded him the fortune of traveling the nation performing comedy and poetry as well as being a guest speaker at public forums with community leaders. A veteran of the performance art scene in New York City, he is a resident poet at the legendary Nuyorican Poets Cafe and the famed Lincoln Center. Wordz is also a cast member of the comedy troupe 'Lose Control', a teaching artist in 'SLAM 101' and a founding member of 'El Grito De Poetas'. His work has been written about or featured in the LA Times, PBS, El Museo Del Barrior's 'Speak Up, Speak Out' anthology, the LA Times, Chicago Tribune and many more.
A Palestinian American from San Diego, California, Khalid Abu Dawas currently studies at New York University in the Global Liberal Studies program. Khalid’s work appears or is forthcoming in Apogee, Black Napkin Press, Public Pool, and The Metaworker. He was also part of NYU’s poetry slam team, which, in 2017, walked away with a co-champion title. Khalid’s work investigates mixed ethnic identity in diaspora, and weaves in and out of the intricacies of mental health and masculinity. If he isn’t writing, Khalid is probably taking photos with his cat.
Catherine Barnett is the recipient of a Guggenheim Fellowship, a Whiting Writers Award, the Glasgow Prize for Emerging Writers, and a Pushcart Prize. Her most recent book, The Game of Boxes, published by Graywolf Press in 2012, won the James Laughlin Award from the Academy of American Poets for an outstanding second book. She is also the author of Into Perfect Spheres Such Holes Are Pierced, which received the Beatrice Hawley Award and was published in 2004 by Alice James Books. Barnett has taught at Barnard, the New School, and NYU, where she was honored with an Outstanding Service Award.
James Ciano is a recent graduate of the MFA program in poetry at New York University. A two time Urban Word NYC Grand Slam finalist, his work has been awarded an Academy of American Poets Prize, the John Curtis Underwood Memorial Prize, a residency from the Vermont Studio Center, and can be found most recently in jubilat, and Prairie Schooner.
Daniel Gallant is the Executive Director of the Nuyorican Poets Cafe, the author of the short story collection Determined to Prove, and the recipient of a 2016 Eisenhower Fellowship. He is also a poet, playwright, theatrical producer, actor and teacher. His writing has appeared in eight anthologies from Vintage Books, Applause / Hal Leonard and Theater Communications Group. Daniel previously served as the Director of Theater and Talk Programming at the 92nd Street Y’s Makor and Tribeca centers. As an Eisenhower Fellow, he has explored how cultural organizations in Spain and Japan use innovative program and funding models to expand arts engagement. Daniel also advises cultural organizations in the United States about how to use game theory and social media to broaden their impact. He has been featured in the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, Crain’s New York, the Daily News, New York Magazine, the Los Angeles Times and Voice of America; and on MTV, NBC, CNN, NY1, CBS, NPR, Univision, the BBC and other networks. According to the Wall Street Journal, "Mr. Gallant has exploited expanding social-media tools to grow the cafe from a small, volunteer-led venue best known for weekly poetry events to a thriving arts center with partnerships across the city."
*Winners will be paid by NYU Accounts Payable by University check, and must provide address and contact information, along with a completed W9 form. WInners will be selected from a judges panel.