The Peterborough Poetry Slam is very proud to present a feature all the way from Vancouver, B.C. a showcase with Jillian and special guest Sasha Patterson and Wes Ryan.
Host: Jon Hedderwick
Seriously, don’t miss this one!
Jillian Christmas was born and raised in Markham, Ontario. She currently lives on the unceded territories of the Squamish, Tsleil-Waututh and Musqueam people (Vancouver, BC.), where she serves as Artistic Director of Versəs Festival of Words. She has won Grand Poetry-Slam Championship titles at both the Vancouver BedRocc poetry-slam (2011), as well as the Vancouver Poetry Slam (2012, 2014). To date, Jillian has held spots on five Canadian slam teams, has competed in nine North American national poetry slams, including proudly representing Vancouver at the Women of the World Poetry Slam in Minneapolis, Minnesota (2013), Austin, Tx (2014) and Albuquerque, NM (2015).
Jillian’s work has been featured in numerous online publications including the Huffington Post, and published in a number of collections, most recently including Matrix New Queer Writing (issue 98), The Post Feminist Post, Plenitude Magazine, Room Magazine (39.1) and celebrated anthology, The Great Black North.
An enthusiastic organizer within the Canadian poetry community, Jillian has participated in, developed and executed programs in partnership with Toronto Poetry Project, Wordplay Poetry in Schools, Brendan McLeod’s Travelling Slam, the Vancouver Writers Festival, The Talking Stick Festival, Urban Native Youth Association, University of British Colombia and the CULTCH IGNITE mentorship. She continues to facilitated spoken word workshops for youth and adults across the country.
She is the founding director of Toronto’s acclaimed Peace Pipe Poetry Sessions on Yonge St., former Artistic director of the East Van Culture Awards, as well as past Volunteer coordinator for Hullabaloo: Youth Spoken Word Festival. From 2011 – 2014 Jillian was a dedicated member of Spoken Word Canada’s board of directors. Holding first Secretary and Member at Large positions, her duties included the development of national policy to improve political dynamics within the spoken word community, as well as the increase of anti-oppression initiatives.
Jillian continues to tour the continent extensively, finding great joy in collaborative projects with a slew of exceptional artists, experimenting with music/poetry fusion, sharing stages and stories with the likes of The Recipe, C.R. Avery, powerhouse vocalist Chelsea D. E. Johnson and the musicians of the Vancouver Opera. As for her latest artistic endeavors, Jillian begins her tenure as the most recently elected Vancouver Poetry Slam Slam-Master this April 2016, and will split her focus between this esteemed position and preparations for an upcoming Australian tour with her band The Late Nights