|Photo by Tara Graeber|
Tyler "Valence" Sirvinskas is a performance poet and new media artist based in Arizona.
Spoken word, performance art, electronic music, and visual art are all elements of Valence's artistic vision. In 2011, he began competing in poetry slams, and represented Flagstaff at the 2011 National Poetry Slam. In 2012, he won the Sedona Grand Slam, and in 2013 secured a spot on the Sedona National Poetry Slam Team.
Valence has lived in Arizona for the last decade, but was born in and spent his childhood in Chicago. Part of the last generation to know first-hand what life was like before the internet, Valence is grateful for anything that makes people silence their smartphones.
In the future, Valence has plans for touring, various projects, and a new style of performance art that combines spoken word with live video and music. At only 23 years of age, he's still somewhat green but definitely done screwing around.
Valence will face off with poets The Klute, Verbal Kensington, Evan Dissinger, Joy Young, Gabbi Jue, James Gould, Lauren Remy, Lauren Perry, Rowie Shebala, Spencer Troth and Maya Hall at the Sedona Poetry Grand Slam.
On Saturday, June 7, the best poets in Arizona will compete in the 2014 Sedona Poetry Grand Slam, which kicks off at 7:30 p.m. at the Mary D. Fisher Theatre, 2030 W. State Route 89A, Suite A-3.
Tickets are $12. To purchase tickets, click here.
Slam poetry is an art form that allows written page poets to share their work alongside theatrical performers, hip-hop artists and lyricists. While many people may think of poetry as dull and laborious, a poetry slam is like a series of high-energy, three-minute one-person plays.
All types of poetry are welcome on the stage, from street-wise hip-hop and narrative performance poems, to political rants and introspective confessionals. Any poem is a "slam" poem if performed in a competition. All poets get three minutes per round to entertain their audience with their creativity. The poets will be judged Olympics-style by five members of the audience selected at random at the beginning of the slam.
At Nationals, the Sedona National Poetry Slam Team will share the stage with 300 of the top poets in the United States, Canada and Europe, pouring out their words in a weeklong explosion of expression.
Sedona sent its first team to the 2012 National Poetry Slam in Charlotte, N.C., and its second to the 2013 NPS in Boston and Cambridge, Mass.