Cyber Slam @ StAnza!

August 5, 2010

Following the success of last year’s digital mini-festival, StAnza has got together with Overload, Melbourne’s Poetry Festival, to host a brand-new event: a unique Cyber Slam that pits poets from Scotland against their Antipodean counterparts, live and online.

The Cyber Slam is happening on 11 September between midday and 1pm (BST) at the Byre Theatre in St Andrews, and simultaneously at the Overload Poetry Festival, Melbourne. Both teams will be cheered on by audiences at their respective venues and the performances will be webcast live, so viewers from round the world can follow the poets online as they battle it out. The StAnza team includes festival favourites Robin Cairns and Kevin Cadwallander, with Milton Balgonie, Claudia Daventry and Julian Moorman.

The Slam will be immediately followed by Risk-a-Verse, an Open Mic for Fife poets which will be performed live at the Byre Theatre from 2pm-4pm (BST) and webcast to audiences online. This is a chance for the Kingdom’s talented poets to perform in front of a local and a world-wide audience. For details of how to sign up for Risk-a-Verse, contact

Both the Slam and Risk-a-Verse are part of ‘2010: Fife’s Year of Culture’, a major initiative that showcases the talents Fife has to offer through a wide-ranging programme of cultural events.

StAnza’s Festival Eleanor Livingstone said: ‘I was delighted when Melbourne approached us about doing this slam. Our debut virtual festival last year was a huge success and we were keen to exploit the possibilities of digital media for poetry again. This is a great opportunity, especially as part of Fife’s Year of Culture. Of course I’m backing the home team to win, but whatever happens will be fun, and I hope a lot of poets make the most of their chance to appear on the webcast.’

James Waller, Director of  Overload, Melbourne’s Poetry Festival said: ‘Following Skype Slams with Bristol in September 2009 and Singapore in July 2010, the Overload Poetry Skype Slam team is bracing itself for its word-clash with the Scottish StAnza this September. The Skype Slam is an exciting and resourceful way for poets, audiences and organisers from different parts of the globe to get to know each other. We are looking forward to the event and to a Blog-fest about it afterwards. On behalf of Melbourne Overload Poetry Festival I am delighted to welcome this inaugural exchange between the two festivals.’

Both the Slam and Open Mic at the Byre Theatre are free and open to the public.

For more information, check the, StAnza’s Facebook page and follow updates on Twitter.

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