Word Warriors, slam poetry group in Nepal
A collection of poets and poetry lovers who want to be a part of the growing spoken poetry culture in Kathmandu, Word Warriors, founded by Pranab Singh (co-founder of Quixote’s Cove) is not a formal group and it does not boast to be one either. The formation of the group happened by a chance. It started after the US Embassy and the Quixote’s Cove hosted three American Slam Poets in December 2010.
The formation of the group was an attempt to give continuity to the workshops and inter-school slam competition (QC Awards 2010) and they met regularly, posted on Facebook and performed around town occasionally to promote slam and get more people interested in it. There are four hundred and nine (and growing) members in the group today. The members, also known as warriors, get-together once in a while to share poems, stories, techniques and exchange criticism while learning from each other and since its inception, they have created a platform for spoken poetry amongst the various art forms vying for space in certain Kathmandu circles and members. They have performed in schools, cultural programs, bars and other artsy event function and has organized and participated in a number of slams around town leaving an impression to the audience.
Their movement of the spoken word has given space to people, especially the younger generation to express themselves in a way that cannot be found in the traditional arts. The spoken word poetry has no rules on what you can say or how you can say giving more freedom and flexibility to the poets. The poems have different subject matters and themes from anger to god to love to family to politics to sex to happiness to jobs to gender and the poets can either impress or sometimes, offense the audience. However, indifference is the worst outcome in the spoken word poetry.
The Word Warriors are trying to revitalize the tradition of performance poetry in Nepal although it has always been a part of Nepali culture. The Word Warriors with their slam movement are trying to introduce this art form to younger generation with more relevance. The powerful performance makes you realize the importance of reading, writing and communicating.