For several years now, the Loft Literary Center has been using its literary prowess to curate and present a series of events dedicated to spoken word artists and artists of color. Equilibrium — or EQ for short — has worked successfully with acclaimed national acts and local emerging stars to much avail, even winning a Minnesota Nonprofit Award for the Anti-Racism Initiative in 2010.
The Loft themes each season of their shows, regardless of which program the shows falls under. This fall their theme is Vigilance. In The Loft’s own words, the theme of Vigilance is meant to ask questions like “How can poems and stories help us to maintain attention over long periods of time? How does language bear witness?” and explore “the ways in which words help us hold light in the darkness.” This Saturday, November 18th at 8:00 P.M., EQ is welcoming national act #BlackTransMagick to it’s stage, using the theme of Vigilance as a guide.
#BlackTransMagick is a collaborative performance and writing duo comprised of poet/educator J Mase III and poet/priestess/actor/author Dane Figueroa Edidi. As individual artists they have both toured all over the world and been featured on The Root, Buzzfeed, and The New York Times. Together they create “a powerhouse of words, spit, ancestor and pure Black Trans Liberation” according to press materials for this Saturday’s show. Says the duo of their work, “We are a multi-gendered piece of Black Trans, multi-faith, clay seeking to make a world for ourselves and those like us to rebuild in. For the masses we exist as poets and beats, but to those who we call family, call artists, call Black & Brown trans creators, call queer artists of color, call wisdom seekers, we are part of the very real revolution centering Black trans people.”
When Mase III and Figueroa Edidi are not on stage together, they create crucial and unique opportunities for QTPOC (queer and trans people of color) to not only perform, but create sustainable careers in Spoken Word. One way they’re doing that right now is through The Loft’s Spoken Word Immersion Fellowship. The Spoken Word Immersion Fellowship is for artists of color and indigenous artists looking to create and implement community learning and enrichment plans. #BlackTransMagick’s fellowship includes a retreat for black trans artists that culminates in a performance as well as a book centered on Black Trans spirituality and magickal practices.
#BlackTransMagick’s performance on the 18th is guaranteed to be transformative. Their spoken word work regularly shakes audiences to their core, providing unique and often uplifting meditations on the oppression and magick black and trans or queer people face. As if that weren’t enough, DJ Nak Hoon Jung, Jayson Smith, and newly elected city Councilwoman (and Spoken Word star in her own right) Andrea Jenkins join the duo for this night of Magick and performance.
Equilibrium Presents #BlackTransMagick is just $10 in advance, but does have Pay What You Can options at the door. Those tickets will be available thirty minutes before the event starts on a first-come, first-served basis. Seating is general admission. The show takes place at the Loft’s Open Book performance hall. More information and tickets are available here.