Martin Luther King Spoken Word Contest

The 2019 Martin Luther King Lecture is dedicated to game-changers: young people who are working with heart and soul to draw attention to the major challenges of our time – issues like social inequality, waste reduction and climate change.

As part of this year’s lecture programme, we are organizing a Martin Luther King spoken word contest.

Make your voice heard!
Spoken word artists, storytellers, writers of today (and tomorrow) and other language lovers – heads up! This year’s Martin Luther King Lecture programme will feature a spoken word competition. What do you think needs to happen to tackle major issues like climate change and inequality of opportunity? What does your ideal world look like and how can we make it a reality? What’s stopping you from becoming a true game-changer? Be inspired by Martin Luther King and inspire us with your word skills!

Five nominees for Martin Luther King Spoken Word competition
On Wednesday, 20 November, jury members Babs Gons, Hella van der Wijst and Dave Ensberg discussed the entries received for the Martin Luther King Spoken Word competition. The contributions were assessed on the basis of the themes that they addressed (in line with Martin Luther King's ideas) and on presentation (creative language, flow and expressiveness). The jury was very impressed by the submissions. The five nominees for the Martin Luther King Spoken Word competition are: Mohamed Badaou, Nicole Whyte, Tom Strik, Latiffah Salima Baldeh and Erwin de Sterke. They will present their entries live during the reception for the Martin Luther King Lecture. The jury will announce the winner of the prize at the end of the day’s programme.

Martin Luther King was committed to an inclusive approach to diversity. This is linked with concern for our environment and planet, because the costs of climate change are falling disproportionately on the less fortunate.

The wordsmiths behind the five best entries will receive €250 and be invited to perform live at the Martin Luther King lecture on 28 November at Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam. From these five contestants, the final winner – chosen and announced at the end of the evening – will take home €1500. 

Dave Ensberg, Hella van der Wijst, Babs Gons.

Please note
By submitting your contribution to the competition, you give Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam permission to use your video and name on its communication channels starting 11 November 2019.