University of Birmingham win UniSlam 2018

By Ross Barnett

The University of Birmingham walked away from The Curve Theatre in Leicester as winners of the UniSlam poetry competition on Sunday evening.

birmingham uni unislam

They fought off opposition from the University of Kent, Bath Spa and Manchester University in the final to win the trophy.

Hannah Ledlie, a member of the winning team, said: “It was an amazing feeling performing on stage and to collect the trophy at the end of the night.”

The event brought together 25 teams from all over the UK and Ireland for a weekend of poetry slams and workshops.

The preliminary rounds were held in De Montfort University’s Hugh Aston building on Friday while the semi-finals and grand final were held in The Curve.

The quality of poetry on show was high but judges were particularly looking for teams who excellently incorporated all members of their team into their performances, which the winners successfully did.

“We talked a lot in our group about what makes a great piece and we came to the conclusion that it’s only good if every single person is in it,” said Hannah.

“Group pieces are so unique in poetry because they are hard to put together but if you put in the work it really pays off and makes you stand out.”

Her team mate, Kimberley Knaggs, added: “We wanted, especially for the final, to do things where we were all on the stage together because it has been a team effort all the way through.

“Poetry is a fantastic form of expression as there’s a million ways to go about it.

“It speaks universally even if you don’t do it well. It’s how you say it, it’s like any of the arts – a form of expression.”

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