Poetry Week 17

Wednesday, April 26, 2017
Derick Cross
Derick Cross (The Living Instrument) is a multi-dimensional visual and vocal artist who creates imagery and sound that transcend the boundaries of genres combining the art of poetry, beatboxing and emceeing/rap.This “Vocal Beat Expressionist” has displayed his vocal acrobatics in venues nationally and internationally, including Madison Square Garden, SOB’s, BB Kings, Carolines, and Lincoln Center’s Avery Fisher Hall. His vocal talents were featured on MTV, The Electric Company, Nickelodeon, and BET’s 106’s and Park. He was an HBO’s Def Poetry Jam Poet (2003), the Hottest Poet’s Spoken Word Grand Champion of 2002-03 as well as a member of their international slam team of 2003. Mr. Cross is also an Arts Educator who has worked with youth & adults in his areas of expertise.
Christopher Cajigas: 
Chilo, a founding member of “El Grito de los Poetas” has featured at hundreds of well-known venues and universities across the country. He’s recorded 7 Hip-Hop albums and has been featured in the poetry anthology “Me No Habla With Acento”. He also completed a solo spoken word poetry book “Closed Doors and Open Windows”. He was recently featured on the Grammy-winning album “The Offense of the Drum”.  
Chukwuma Obasi: 

 is the Arts & Humanities Program Assistant. He holds a BA in Communication (double minor in musical theatre and dance) from SUNY Geneseo. Obasi joined TE’A (Theatre, Engagement & Action) as an actor and writer at its inception in 2008, when it was a new theatre company partnering with Intersections to produce Under The Veil. TE’A has since become an Intersections partner.

As a performing artist, Obasi continues to work in theatre, film, and television, using his talents as dancer, writer, choreographer, director, producer, and spoken word poet. Recent theatre projects with TE’A include Cadence: Home, and The America Project. In addition, Obasi has written and directed several new plays as a part of the Retaliatory Violence Insight Project—an initiative of Intersections and George Mason University—as well as a new Play Reading Series for Intersections that features pieces with an emphasis on social justice.

Thursday, April 27, 2017 
Derick Cross: see above 
Jive Poetic: 
Received his BA in Media Studies from the University of Buffalo before dedicating all his time to good poems, classic Hip-Hop albums, clever t-shirts, blue pit bulls and bodega sandwiches. Jive is the co-founder of both Jam On It Poetry and The Soundbite Poetry Festival. Currently, he is the host of the Open Slam at the NuyoRican Poets Cafe’. When Jive Poetic is not on tour, he leads poetry and hip-hop workshops in the New York public school system and in various community centers throughout the Tri-State area. 
Roya Marsh:  
Roya Marsh is the poet/author of the chapbook Not All of Me Shall Die. She works as a preschool teacher and youth mentor, but has always had a passion for writing. As a spoken word poet she brings a heartfelt intensity and deep beliefs to the stage, brandishing a saber of light that will penetrate those dark pockets of prejudice, injustice, and hurt, that lay buried deep within each of us.
Roya was a finalist in the 2013 Poetry Idol, 2013 Inspired Word Slam Master Jam Champion, 2014 Nuyorican Grand Slam Champion and captain of the first all-female slam team in the tristate area, representing Nuyorican Poets Cafe. Saroya has recently been ranked second in the nation at the Woman of the World Poetry Slam. She has been featured at many venues and colleges around the country.
Friday, April 2, 2017 
Derick Cross: See above 
Purvi Shah:
As a changemaker, Purvi Shah works with social justice organizations to further equity, safety, and opportunities for underserved communities — especially via coalition-building to drive change from diverse constituents.In 2008, she won the inaugural SONY South Asian Excellence Award for Social Service for her leadership in fighting violence against women. She is the author of two poetry collections: Terrain Tracks (New Rivers Press: 2006) and Dark Lip of the Beloved: Sound Your Fiery-God Praise (Belladonna*: 2015).She believe in the beauty of change. You can see my content and creative expertise in What Creates Change? a storytelling film on ending violence. I recently directed Together We are New York, a community-based multimedia poetry project to highlight the voices of Asian Americans during the 10th anniversary of 9/11 and co-led a creative expression workshop, Movement To Powerto confront gender violence and enable healing. She has  hosted her own radio show, A Women’s World, that showcases the voices of innovative women.
David Roberts:  
David Roberts aka D-Black is a Bronx-native who has been writing and performing poetry for the past 10 years. By blending his social/psychological awareness with his urban/Afrocentric flavor he tries his best to express issues that promote Black awareness and unity. He has been doing so successfully at such venues as the Apollo, NJPAC (New Jersey Performing Arts Center), the African Burial Grounds, Nuyorican Poets Café, Urban Juke Joint, Barnes & Nobles, MOCAs in Harlem, the Knitting Factory, the Bowery Poets Café, Harlem’s Children’s Zone (TRUCE), and various “Spoken Word Showcases” hosted by Hottest Poets, Inc. and For the Love of Poetry. He has been named a Regional Grand Slam Spoken Word Champion for The Great Debaters Slam 2007, Nubian Heritage Slam 2007, and an opening–act for Phyllis Yvonne-Stickney at Symphony Space in Harlem. He is also the three-time winner of the Manhattan Monologue Slam for August — November ’08 (www.mmslam.com). He was featured in RnB star Tiffany Evans’ music video, “I’m Grown” and is currently starring in the off-Broadway production “Black Angels Over Tuskegee”