Follow the upstart Bowery Slam Poetry Team—five African-American, Afro-Hispanic and queer poets in their 20s. Mentored by a demanding coach who pushes them past their personal boundaries and write from a place of vulnerability, pain and honesty, the poets break down, break through and compose their best work ever.
Timely and difficult, their spoken word slays—but will these soul-searching pieces about police violence and the whitewashing of black culture be able to compete against choreographed crowd-pleasers for the title? Will opting to make a statement instead of a show spell their defeat?
This emotional and inspiring film gives insightful commentary on race, gender, identity and sexual politics in America today. Don’t Be Nice is both an absorbing competition doc and a vital writer’s workshop that proves once and for all that winning hearts and minds is the ultimate prize.
Following the film, Pamela Blair of The Poetry Den joins with local poets to speak about the spoken word community in South Bend—and how residents can engage as poets or as listeners.
For more information on the program, contact the Civil Rights Heritage Center at 574.307.6135 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
This program received support from an Indiana Humanities Action Grant.