Students from UTM’s first spoken word course take the mic for live performance

Ali Raza

It’s an “empowering art form,” poet and UTM lecturer Andrea Thompson says of spoken word. 

The oral poetic performance art was offered to students at UTM for the first time this past semester, and now they’re set to perform in a showcase at the MiST Theatre on April 11.  

Thompson says she’s excited to see the performances after seeing what students have learned throughout the term. 

“This is a transformational course,” Thompson says. “The goal is to create a transformative experience that changes students’ lives.” 

Thompson recently published her spoken word albumThe Good Word. She taught a spoken word class at U of T’s School of Continuing Studies years prior. But this third-year course, under the umbrella of Special Topics in Creative Writing, is the first credit course offered at the Mississauga campus. 

It was met with enthusiasm, Thompson says. 

“There aren’t a lot of spoken word courses being taught [anywhere] as credit courses,” she says. “I was really excited about this, and so were the students.” 

One of those students, Sumyia Hashmi, is set to perform her spoken word poetry at the showcase. Hashmi says the course has enhanced her writing and poetry skills. 

“I hope it’s a recurring course at the university,” she says. 

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