Heights Arts brings back poetic carnage with Oct. 10 Haiku Death Match
Past haiku masters, defending champions, and new contenders will be competing Saturday, Oct. 10, at Dobama Theatre, for glory, fame, and a not-so-cheesy trophy in Heights Arts' occasionally annual Haiku Death Match.
The Death Match is a live haiku poetry competition where audience votes determine the Haiku Master. Contenders, who come prepared with an arsenal of haiku poems, compete in pairs for a given number of rounds. Audience members judge the poems by raising color paddles to indicate their votes, while volunteer counters tally the votes. The emcee announces the score and keeps the crowds calm. The last poet standing is the 2015 Haiku Death Match Master.
On-the-spot poetic competition can be traced back to the 17th-c. Japanese poet Basho, who is also credited for making the 17-syllable haiku a revered form of poetry. This year's contenders include defending champion Ray McNeice, past masters Kathleen Cerveny and Geoff Landis, plus haiku samurai Dianne Borsenik, Lee Chilcote, Jeff Coryell, Dominick Duda, Bridget Kriner, Mary Turzillo and Marc Zielinski.
Heights Arts invites the community to enjoy the poetic carnage, participate as the voting horde, and help support literary arts programming.
Advance tickets are recommended for the 7 p.m. festivities and are available at the 2175 Lee Road gallery, by phone at 216-371-3457, online at www.heightsarts.org, or at the door. Tickets are $10 for Heights Arts members, and $15 for the general public.
Mary Ryan is on staff at Heights Arts, a nonprofit community arts organization.