Adjusting to the current climate of “staying at home,” the founders and organizers of O, Miami Poetry Festival have taken their yearly event, held every April in honor of National Poetry Month, virtual. They’re calling it O, Miami O, nline and using the old American Online (AOL) logo as a fun throwback pun.
Still in the midst of planning the event when events around the city kept getting canceled, Founder Scott Cunningham made the tough decision to go virtual.
“We knew it was the right thing to do. We made the decision on March 11, which was slightly ahead of the news cycle, but not by much,” he said, realizing that the situation was getting more serious by the day.
Another challenge was re-planning the event in three weeks so they could plan to start on April 1 as planned but they managed.
The schedule from April 1-30 includes all new events since O, Miami primarily takes place in physical spaces around Miami.
Making this new online/virtual month-long event happen meant learning to use the online platform Crowdcast and in addition, they’ll be using Instagram for other online activations including lessons plans for families with age appropriate writing prompts and archival footage from past festivals.
This year’s participating poets include Miami Heat’s Udonis Haslem, who recently wrote a compelling piece titled “The Real Miami” on The Players Tribune website, Nate Marshall and Franny Choi to name few. And leave it to O, Miami to come up with projects like MTV Cribs but for sad people, Robots from Miami who re-write Robert Frost and The Department of Things We’d Forgotten About.
The full schedule is on their website.
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