WORDCUP 2023: Our national showcase of young poets

WORDCUP 2023 brought together teams of young people from across the country with the aim of creating a community of young poets and a platform for their voices to be heard.

Following poetry and performance workshops delivered in six regional hubs by leading UK poets, the young people shared their work at a local showcase before heading to Manchester for a residential weekend in July 2023.

Hosted by The Poetry Library at Manchester Metropolitan University, the WORDCUP weekend provided an opportunity for the young people to represent who they are and where they come from in their own words through performing the poems they created via the workshop programme.  They built new relationships and understanding of each other and the power of spoken word through shared creativity and a celebration of the achievements of everyone involved in WORDCUP2023.

Who was involved

WORDCUP 2023 provided artists a chance to network and develop skills. Each team worked with an established poet and an assistant poet who developed their facilitation skills during the project

The weekend was hosted by WORDCUP Artistic Director Jacob Sam-La Rose who was joined over the weekend with WORDCUP Celebrators Joelle Taylor, Shirley May and US Poet Danez Smith.

WORDCUP was a partnership project and we were delighted to work with the following brilliant organisations from across England: 

Geraldine Connor Foundation – Leeds
Young Identity – Greater Manchester
Suffolk Libraries – Suffolk
ArtfulScribe – Hampshire
Sound Communities – Devon 
John Bernard & Emilie Lauren Jones – Coventry

Word Cup 2023 Blogs:

Antosh Wojcik: tHE pATH FROM shadow to poet coach

Poet Coach Antosh Wojcik began his Word Cup journey in 2014 as a shadow facilitator. Now in 2023 he returns as a Poet Coach leading the Hampshire team into the competition. Read more about his time leading the team and his own reflections on how his career has developed over the last 10 years.

Rebecca Abbott: Apples and Snakes changes lives. Apples and snakes changed my life

Back in 2012 Rebecca Abbott began her career with Apples and Snakes, and now in her role of Creative Producer for Suffolk Libraries she brings the Suffolk team to the Word Cup 2023. This fascinating blog delves into the power of poetry and the art of perseverance.

Jacob Sam-La Rose: Word Cup Overview

A blog that covers Word Cup across the years, sharing special moments and why programmes like this are so important for children and young people: “Word Cup rules apply. When we commit to creating brave spaces for people and poetry, there is no singular victor. Everybody wins.”

Word Cup Highlights

Watch this short video (just over 3min) that beautifully captures the vibe of weekend.

Watch the showcase









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