Slam Team prepares for major competition

Margo Levitan, Entertainment Editor

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Boom.

The Slam Team is preparing for Louder than a Bomb, one of their largest competitions of the year.

“We are preparing very thoroughly this year, mostly by going to performance workshops, writing workshops and general practice,” the Slam Team coach Toly Walker says. “We focus on honing in on their craft, especially on their stage performance.”

Louder than a Bomb is a poetry competition that involves students nationwide, picking the best of the best from various slam teams. The judges score the pieces from 1-10, taking into account both the performance and technique utilized in the performance. However, there is a lot that goes on behind the scene.

“Running your piece over and over again, going over the group piece with your teammates, critiquing your poem and other people’s poems are just parts of it,” senior Lauren Davis says.

Each team competes in two rounds, called bouts, before continuing on in the competition. Although a majority of the students involved are in high school, participants range from middle schoolers to college students.

For the most part, the high school level slam teams perform four individual poems and one group poem with four people. The top 16 teams advance past the first two rounds with four of these teams successfully entering into the final round. However, this team is after more than another medal, with one of the main goals of the club being to create a family for these poetry loving students.

“Slam team and poetry club allow students to let out all of their emotions and feelings through poetry, rap or song,”senior Aubry Dupiton says. “It gives them an outlet to relieve stress and receive feedback.”

With this being a nationwide contest, the stakes are high. Yet, the team will focus on building each other up until then. With the opening date of the competition starting on Feb. 13 at Columbia College in Chicago, there is still a lot of time to hone in all of the skills for the competition.

“There’s no way not to love slam team like family when you’re inviting them into the deepest, rawest part of your life,” junior Miranda Rivera-Kohr says. “I feel like this is my place and my purpose; these are my people.”

Slam team hosts open mics during 5th and 6th period once a month and work hard to prepare for the upcoming shows.