The Largest Youth Poetry Festival In The World

Louder Than A Bomb (LTAB) is the largest youth poetry festival in the world.

LTAB is an annual event hosting over 1,000 youth poets for a month of Olympic-style poetry bouts, workshops, and special events. Students representing schools and community groups in the Chicago area perform original solo and group poems in a tournament-style competition.

From all of us at Young Chicago Authors: thank you for making LTAB 2018 a successful festival!

About LTAB
Our Mission

Founded in 2001

Founded in 2001 after the Twin Towers fell, during a time when young people of color in Chicago were being targeted by an anti-gang loitering law which aimed to take away their right to assemble in groups of more than two.

By 2 Chicago-Based Poets

Two Chicago-based poets-Kevin Coval and Anna West-and a group of educators created a space for youth to congregate and express themselves through the writing and performing of spoken word poetry.

From a Handful of Teams

What started with a handful of teams spitting bars in a basement has grown into over 120 teams all over the city and the suburbs competing to packed houses.

To Cities Across America

Now more than 13 cities across the country and Canada use the LTAB Chicago model to educate and organize.

The Documentary

Louder Than a Bomb - Trailer

Directed by Greg Jacobs and Jon Siskel, the LOUDER THAN A BOMB documentary follows four Chicago high school poetry teams as they prepare to compete in LTAB.

LTAB Calendar

View All LTAB Events
LTAB Events
Featured Event
Mar 2

LTAB Prelims

1104 S. Wabash Chicago, IL 60605

Upcoming Event
Feb 20

#LTAB19 Preliminary Bouts

11am-8pm @ Columbia College (Various Locations)

No pre-sales for prelims, tickets available for purchase at venue day of.

February 20 - March 2
This first round of our slam-style poetry competition features performances by hundreds of youth poets from schools and community organizations from all sides of the city & beyond. Preliminary Bouts will be held at various times on Wednesdays - Saturdays.

Upcoming Event
Feb 21

#LTAB19 Preliminary Bouts

11am-8pm @ Columbia College (Various Locations)

PRELIMINARY BOUTS February 20 - March 2
This first round of our slam-style poetry competition features performances by hundreds of youth poets from schools and community organizations from all sides of the city & beyond. Preliminary Bouts will be held at various times on Wednesdays - Saturdays.

Upcoming Event
Feb 22

#LTAB19 Preliminary Bouts

11-8pm @ Columbia College (Various Locations)

No pre-sales for prelims, tickets available for purchase at venue day of.

February 20 - March 2
This first round of our slam-style poetry competition features performances by hundreds of youth poets from schools and community organizations from all sides of the city & beyond. Preliminary Bouts will be held at various times on Wednesdays - Saturdays.

Registration for Louder Than a Bomb Is as Easy as 1,2,3

Register Today
Registration