2019 Word FestIn celebration of National Poetry Month, Albany Poets is proud to present the 2019 Word Fest featuring the poetry and spoken word of upstate New York. This year’s event will take place Friday, April 12 – Saturday, April 20, 2019.

Whether you would like to take in a featured performance, attend the Word Fest Invitational Slam, celebrate the launch of the seventh edition of Up The River, or participate in the 24-hour Readings Against the End of the World open mic, this year’s Word Fest is the place for you.

24 Hours of Words

Albany Poets and the English Department at UAlbany will kick off this year’s festival with Readings Against the End of the World, a 24-hour read-a-thon.

All word-lovers and writers are invited to share readings – original work or favorite passages, poems and rants, raps and stories, spoken word and personal visions- enough to fill twenty-four hours the power of words. The event will start Friday, April 12 at the Husted Hall Café on the UAlbany Downtown campus, and will continue until Saturday, April 13.

This year’s event will host several special events – an evening of regional open mic hosts sharing their own work, midnight theatre, a morning youth reading, afternoon college readers, and much more – all alternating with open mic signup slots.

Online sign up for the open mic portions of Readings Against the End of the World will be available on the Word Fest website on Monday, April 1. Organizations interested in having a table can contact Albany Poets atalbanypoets@gmail.com for information.

Festival of Features

Throughout the week many poets and writers will be featured at venues in the area.

On Monday, April 15, the weekly Poetic Vibe open mic, hosted by D. Colin, at the Troy Kitchen will feature local poet Kareem Ture.

The annual “Word Fest Night of Features” will take place at the Hudson River Coffee House on Quail Street in Albany on Monday, April 15. This event is an evening of poetry and prose featuring regional poets and writers Avery StempelKaren FabianeLuis Pabon, and Danielle Pouliot.

On Tuesday, April 16, the Brass Tacks series will feature a very special performance from a regional poet followed by an open mic.

The 7th edition of Up The River, Albany Poets poetry journal, launches with a reading from a select group of contributors on Wednesday, April 17, at Restaurant Navona on New Scotland Avenue in Albany.

Caroline Bardwell will be the featured reader on Thursday, April 18, at the Third Thursday Poetry Night, hosted by Dan Wilcox, at the Social Justice Center on Central Avenue. There will be an opportunity before and after the feature for poets to step up to the mic and share their work.


Friday Night Slam!

On Friday, April 19, the Word Fest heads back across the river to Troy Kitchen as Albany Poets welcomes teams from all over the Northeast to compete for prizes and bragging rights in the 7th Annual Word Fest Invitational Slam. This event is the perfect exclamation point on an amazing week of open mics, featured readings, and dynamic poetry and spoken word.


And So Much More

As we get closer to the 2019 Word Fest, more events, activities, and features will be announced. Be sure to check the website, albanywordfest.com, and our social media accounts often for details and information on the annual celebration of Upstate New York’s poetry and spoken word.


The 2019 Word Fest is sponsored by Albany Poets, UAlbany Writing Center, Hudson Valley Writers Guild, The Low Beat, The Arts Center of the Capital Region, Troy Kitchen, The Social Justice Center, Hudson River Coffee House, and the very generous donations of supporters of the arts in upstate New York.

About Albany Poets 

Albany Poets is a local organization whose goal is to promote the poets and poetry of Upstate New York. Albany Poets hosts open mics, poetry readings, slams, music and spoken word events, and the annual Albany Word Fest to increase participation and attendance in the local arts community. Albany Poets’ website,albanypoets.com, is the most comprehensive resource in the Northeast for news and events listings for poetry and spoken word.

Albany Poets mission is to give everyone a platform to share their poetry with the world. Whether it is at an open mic, on a website, or in print, Albany Poets strives to integrate poetry and spoken word into the Capital Region.

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