Slam poet takes Knight Club stage


a&l editor

Words were spoken with rhyme and rhythm during a very special performance from slam poet Elizabeth Acevedo at the Knight Club Tuesday night.
Acevedo is a New York City native who is currently touring the U.S. in a series of performances for universities.
Tuesday night’s 90-minute performance was hosted by Gannon University’s Activities Programming Board (APB).
“We decided to book Elizabeth because she was different and we liked that,” APB special events chair and junior English major Elizabeth Gauriloff said.
“She’s very open about sharing her life in her poems and it’s really interesting.”
Born and raised in the Big Apple, Acevedo is a product of her city’s tough grit.
Her love for spoken words began at a young age with her Dominican family’s tradition of oral storytelling.
This passion continued into high school as Acevedo watched many open mic performances with her high school poetry club.
She later went on to earn a Bachelor of Arts degree in performing arts from George Washington University and a Master of Fine Arts degree in creative writing from the University of Maryland.
Acevedo is no stranger to the open mic stage with her 12 years of performance experience.
She has graced some of the most prestigious venues in the U.S. including the Lincoln Center, Madison Square Garden and the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts.
Acevedo has also performed on television on the Black Entertainment Television Network (BET) and the mun2 channel, which is a bilingual television network that targets young Latinos in the U.S.
In addition to these performances, she has also delivered a number of TED Talks and she was honored in the past as a National Slam Poetry Champion and a Beltway Grand Slam Champion.
The internet has been buzzing about a number of Acevedo’s poetry videos, which have gone viral and been picked up by the Public Broadcasting Service (PBS), Cosmopolitan and Upworthy.
Many of Acevedo’s poems are catching attention due to the important issues they cover, such as race, gender and culture.
In an interview with PBS, she explained how her poem titled “Spear” is intended to start a discussion about the cultural shift against sexual assault and rape culture.
“We need to change the way men approach women,” Acevedo said. “We need to change the conversation of consent, of objectifying women’s bodies. Those things need to change.”
Acevedo currently lives and works in Washington, D.C., where she was named the 2016 Women of the World Poetry Slam representative.
2016 has been a busy year for Acevedo as her poetry chapter book titled “Beastgirl & Other Original Myths” is expecting publication.
Her other book “Medusa Reads La Negra’s Palm” is the winner of the 2016 Berkshire Prize.
Acevedo is spending a large portion of 2016 and 2017 visiting a number of universities to share her story and her work.
Some other universities expecting visits from Acevedo include Illinois State, the University of North Texas, Cleveland State University, the University of Arkansas, Westminster College and the University of Delaware.
For more information about Acevedo or to listen to her work, visit
APB will be hosting a number of other similar acts throughout this season including singer Kristen Merlin on Oct. 22.
For more information about upcoming APB events visit

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