PHILIPSBURG, Sint Maarten—Last Poet, Abiodun Oyewole, will be visiting the young poets of Soualigan Fyah on Thursday, June 26, at 6:30pm at the Philipsburg Jubilee Library in Philipsburg.
Oyewole’s visit is a collaborative venture between Art Saves Lives Foundation, Soualigan Fyah (Foundation 5 Square Miles St. Martin) and Be The Change Foundation. This is the second year that the three organizations have worked together to facilitate such an evening. Last year the young poets were stunned by performances from, international poet and performing artist, Queen GodIs.
“We are extremely happy that Nicole DeWeever decided to continue with the community outreach part of the Art Saves Lives Summer Intensive. Our youngsters benefit tremendously from being exposed to artists such as Queen GodIs and now Abiodun Oyewole, so we definitely look forward to this experience,” Lysanne Charles-Arrindell, founder and coordinator of Soualigan Fyah said.
Oyewole rose to fame as a part of the politically charged, black power group The Last Poet during the late 1960s in the United States of America. The group, which is thought to be one of the forerunners of Hip-Hop, went on tour throughout the US and Europe. They have recorded about 20 albums in the last 40+ years.
Charles said that the event, which was open to the public free of charge, would start with the Soualigan Fyah poets reading and an open mic, before going over to the performance and workshop aspect with Oyewole.
According to Charles, Soualigan Fyah is a youth poetry group dedicated to creating a vehicle where youngsters can give voice to their emotions and ideas, encouraging youngsters to be aware of and critical of what is happening around them and to encourage the continued development of poetry and spoken word amongst the youth of St. Maarten. The group meets once a month, usually on the last Friday at the Philipsburg Jubilee Library. Once a year the group also hosts the Soualigan Fyah Youth Poetry & Spoken Word Competition, an event where a Supreme Young Poet is crowned after 4 rounds of verbal sparring. The winner for the past two years has been Jenice Forbes of the St. Maarten Academy. Some of the youngsters have also traveled to Tortola and Anguilla to perform at poetry and spoken word events held there.
“Every year we are growing and more importantly the young people and their works are growing. So we invite the public to come out and hear their voices and also share this learning experience with master poet Oyewole with us,” Charles said.
For more information about the event and Soualigan Fyah Charles encourages people to visit the group’s facebook site at: https://www.facebook.com/SoualiganFyah and like the page.