Bronx Council on the Arts presents “Outspoken: A Bronx Poets Feature,” an evening of poetic performances by Lyrical Faith, Alejandro Heredia and Crystal Valentine.
These Bronx poets use their work to speak on topics from race to queerness to class, with a strong focus on activism and advocacy.
The event will take place on June 15, 2020, between the hours of 05:00 p.m. and 06:30 p.m.
To RSVP, please visit here.
About Lyrical Faith
Lyrical Faith is a recent Master’s degree recipient from New York University’s Steinhardt School of Culture, Education & Human Development. Hailing from the Bronx, she is a New York native down to her socks. She’s an active leader in her community, servicing various organizations including the Phoenix Sorority of Minisink, IMPACT Repertory Theatre, New York Urban League Young Professionals and the North Manhattan Alumnae Chapter of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc.
She has written and performed spoken word poetry since the age of 12. She is the co-founder of a monthly open mic showcase for young adults in Harlem known as the Harlem Bomb Shelter. She’s the 2014 two-time winning slam champion and 2015 Verbal Blend Poet of the Year at Syracuse University. Further, she is the 2016 Syracuse University Martin Luther King, Jr. Unsung Hero award recipient, recognized for her social justice work and creative expression at the largest commemoration in the country for Martin Luther King Jr. on a college campus. Through her poetry, Lyrical Faith strives to inspire, educate and advocate for intersectional and institutional issues by merging the arts and activism with a faith-based worldview.
Internationally, she has been featured at the University of Pretoria and the University of Johannesburg in South Africa as well as various venues in Paris, France. Locally, she has been featured at the Great New York State Fair, the annual Harlem Week festival, City College of New York, John Jay College of Criminal Justice, Syracuse University, New York University, St. John’s University, PACE University, has been heard on Sway In The Morning’s Radio Show, as well as many more.
About Alejandro Heredia
Alejandro Heredia is a Queer Afro-Dominican writer from the Bronx. He is a member of Project X’s first Slam team. Since 2016, he has used his writing and organizing skills to create and support literary events in the Bronx, including efforts to resist gentrification in low-income communities. Heredia is passionate about the creative, intellectual, and social lives of Black LGBTQ people across the diaspora. In 2019, he launched a workshop and event series in the Bronx centering Black LGBTQ writers. He graduated from Dickinson College with a BA in English.
About Crystal Valentine
Born and raised in the Bronx, Crystal Valentine is a nationally and internationally poet. Crystal has traveled across seas performing on platforms in Paris, Brazil, Botswana, South Africa and elsewhere. She was named Glamour Magazine’s 2016 College Woman of the Year, Teen Vogue’s Rising Young Black Thought Leader, and was the recipient of the National Conference of College Women Student Leaders Woman’s Distinction Award. A Callaloo Fellow and former New York City Youth Poet Laureate, Crystal’s work has been featured on programming for MSNBC, Blavity, Button Poetry, BET, CNN, The New York Daily News and more. She earned her BA in Psychology at New York University, where she is returning as a MFA candidate in Poetry. She is a coordinator for the Bronx Council on the Arts and is the current Wednesday Night host at the Nuyorican Poets Café.
Crystal is a generator and fierce protector of black joy, and strongly believes that intersectionality is a key factor in liberation. As a queer, black, woman, a lot of her work revolves around bridging the ever present gap between her identities. Her goal is to provide a sanctuary within her poems that can be accessible to ALL black people: queer, trans, women, gender non conforming, disabled, poor, loud, angry, ghetto, for it is when all of these voices are present and accounted for that we can really begin the gruesome work of understanding and breaking down systematic oppression. Above all, Crystal loves her kin, she currently divides her time between curating writing workshops and performing at various venues.
About Bronx Council On The Arts
Founded by visionary community leaders in 1962, the Bronx Council on the Arts (BCA) is dedicated to advancing cultural equity in Bronx. From creative placemaking and arts advocacy to the provision of services for artists and arts organizations, as well as programming for children and seniors, BCA was the first organization in Bronx to focus equally on supporting local artists, serving the community, and catalyzing relationships between the two.
Since its founding, BCA has focused on the work of underrepresented groups, especially artists of color, women, and members of the LGBTQ community. We provide direct services to over 1,000 artists and 250 community-based arts groups each year, and thanks to our granting programs, we are able to touch the lives of over thousands of audience members.
Bronx Council On The Arts
2700 East Tremont Avenue
Bronx, NY 10461