Chicago Beat Blog

Meet Louder Than a Bomb's Younger Sibling: Half Pints

Meet Louder Than a Bomb's Younger Sibling: Half Pints

By: Anna Mason and Tommy Brannigan

On a sunny Saturday on February 18 , dozens of preteens are strolling around an open stage at Columbia College until it’s time for their performances. Half Pints, the slam poetry competition and open mic for kids not quite old enough for the Louder Than A Bomb Poetry Festival.

Half Pints is 9-years-old this year, close to the ages of many of the fifth to eighth grade participants who are filling the room. Some are laughing with friends, some talking with parents—others are quietly reading over their poems. All of them are here, from different zip codes and experiences, to share their stories.

Diana Makowski’s poem is about video games, while Sam Harris adopts...

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Louder Than a Bomba: A Home For Latinx Culture and Expression

Louder Than a Bomba: A Home For Latinx Culture and Expression

By Anna Mason

photos via YCA

Thursday night Feb 22, Columbia College was alive with music and dancing. Teens and adults gathered for the first ever Louder Than A Bomba, an open mic for Latinx people.

The creation of this space has come at a much needed time for the Latinx community. Of the event, coordinator José Olivarez said, “The president has made open and very racist remarks against the Latinx community. I think in that political climate, it’s really powerful to have a gathering where we can celebrate each other and respond and resist.” A commonly stressed idea among attendees was the importance of a safe space where they could ...

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