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A poetry slam is a competition at which poets read or recite original work, Marc Smith is credited with starting the poetry slam at the Get Me High Lounge in Chicago in November 1984. In July 1986, the slam moved to its permanent Chicago home, the Green Mill Jazz Club. In 1990, the first National Poetry Slam took place in Fort Mason, San Francisco, involving a team from Chicago, a team from San Francisco, and an individual poet from New York. The National Poetry Slam has grown and currently features approximately 75 certified teams each year, culminating in five days of competition; although American in origin, slams have spread all over the world. At a poetry slam, members of the audience are chosen by an emcee or host to act as judges for the event. After each poet performs, each judge awards a numeric score to that poem. Scores generally range between a low of zero and a high of ten. In the standardized slam, there will be five judges. The highest and lowest score are dropped, giving each performance a rating between zero and thirty points. In this type of competition, props, costumes, and music are generally forbidden, additionally, most slams enforce a time limit of three minutes (including a grace period of around ten seconds), after which a poet's score may be docked according to how long the poem exceeded the limit. There are three types of slam:

Poetry slams feature a broad range of voices, styles, cultural traditions, and approaches to writing and performance. Some poets are closely associated with the vocal delivery style found in hip-hop music and draw heavily on the tradition of dub poetry, a rhythmic and politicized genre belonging to black and particularly West Indian culture. Others employ an unrhyming narrative formula. Some use traditional theatric devices including shifting voices and tones, while others may recite an entire poem in ironic monotone. Some poets use nothing but their words to deliver a poem, while others stretch the boundaries of the format, tap-dancing or beatboxing or using highly-choreographed movements.

La locandina di una jam session dedicata allo Slam Poetry
A cura di Simone Tucci - Credits - Sito ottimizzato per una risoluzione 1024x768 con Internet Explorer 7.0.5730.13