Word! (1)

Dean Atta, Sheniz Janmohamed, Ahmed Knowmadic

Word! (1)

Host: Jillian Christmas

Event Number: 19
Tickets: $17.00

$9.50 for student groups

Word! (1)

Dean Atta, Sheniz Janmohamed, Ahmed Knowmadic

Wednesday, October 18
10:00am - 11:30am
Granville Island Stage

1585 Johnston St.

The ever-popular spoken word showcase known as Word! has become a signature event at the Festival over the years. Today’s lineup is of the highest calibre. Dean Atta, one of the UK’s finest emerging poets, explores race, identity and sexuality in his work. Canada’s Sheniz Janmohamed first encountered spoken word in high school. She has since completed an MFA and gone on to perform her work internationally. Ahmed Knowmadic, originally from Mogadishu, became the first Somali spoken word champion at the Canadian Festival of Spoken Word in 2011. In 2017, he was named Edmonton’s seventh Poet Laureate. The true power of words is palpable as young minds absorb, react to and find inspiration in the talented performers on stage.

(This event is repeated on Thursday afternoon.)

Suitable for Grades 8-12 and adults. Warning: Content in this event may not be suitable for all classes.

Sold Out

Event Participants:

Dean Atta

United Kingdom

Dean Atta is a poet from London, UK. His debut collection, I Am Nobody’s Nigger, was shortlisted for the Polari First Book Prize. He was named as one of the most influential LGBT people in the UK by The Independent on Sunday Pink List and featured in Out News Global Pride Power List. Atta has performed across the UK and internationally and has been commissioned to write poems for BBC Radio 4, BBC World Service, Dazed & Confused, Keats House Museum, National Portrait Gallery, Tate Britain and Tate Modern. He is working on his second collection, The Black Flamingo.


Dean Atta’s appearance is made possible by the British Council.

Sheniz Janmohamed


Sheniz Janmohamed is an arts educator, spoken word artist and author. Janmohamed has performed nationally and internationally for over 10 years and her work has been published in various journals and anthologies. Beyond her writing, she has taught spoken word and creative writing workshops for all ages at schools, libraries and community organizations, helping participants find their voice. She founded Ignite Poets, a spoken word initiative that focused on social awareness and collaboration. Her second poetry collection Firesmoke delves into the meaning of self and the power of the four elements.


Ahmed Knowmadic


Ahmed Knowmadic is a poet, writer, comedian and speaker. His writing and community activism is inspired by his experiences as an immigrant to Canada, and his desire to make the world a better place.He has competed in spoken word festivals and has received recognition for his involvement in arts and culture initiatives like the Breath in Poetry Collective, which he founded with other poets. He has several poems published in anthologies and journals that are taught in Canada.In 2017, Knowmadic was named the Poet Laureate for the city of Edmonton.