drop the Mic Symposium

Friday, August 17, 2018  •  4:00-9:00pm
National Civil Rights Museum

The Drop the Mic Poetry Slam and Symposium are designed for creatives to use their art for activism by taking a stand on important social issues today based on the foundations of the Civil Rights Movement of our past. This is the fifth year the Museum has hosted the Poetry Slam and is continuing the two-day experience.  The intent is to not only serve as a platform of expression but also as a forum for creative solutions on important issues. 

The Poetry Symposium will feature a MasterClass with a seasoned artist and will cover every aspect of spoken-word craft from inspiration and writing to performance and evaluation. 

Participants will have their choice of attending concurrent workshops led by notable artists.  Workshops are constructed along four tracks – Activism, Youth Voice, Technique, and Business – and encompass a comprehensive range of topics including ways to use art to spark conversation and action in underrepresented communities, how to transform personal trauma into a catalyst for community change, and how to build a brand and generate revenue. 

A top artist will deliver a special Keynote message that will challenge his listeners with every verse & reaches across the spectrum of pop culture.

The evening will wrap up with a free-style Open Mic session for workshop participants and facilitators.




Symposium schedule

  • 3:00pm – 4:00 pm    Registration
  • 4:00 pm – 4:20 pm    Opening Plenary – MasterClass with Ed Mabrey

10-Minute Transition

4:30 pm – 5:30 pm     SESSION 1 WORKSHOPS

  • Activism Track – Art as Activism with Queen Sheba
  • Technique Track – Get InFORMation with Jonathan Samuel Eddie
  • Youth Track – Go Where I Send Thee: Youth As Catalysts for Change with Mackenzie Berry


10-Minute Transition

5:40 pm – 6:40 pm SESSION 2 WORKSHOPS 

  • Activism Track – Art & Activism: From Nina Simone to Kendrick Lamar with Jasmine Mans
  • Technique Track – Get InFORMation with Jonathan Samuel Eddie
  • Business Track – How to Become a Full-Time Performance Artist/Writer with Ed Mabrey


20-Minute Transition with food service

  • 7:00 – 7:20     Dinner Plenary with Keynote by J. Ivy
  • 7:20 – 8:20 pm   Panel Discussion with J. Ivy, Ed Mabrey, Queen Sheba, Jonathan Samuel Eddie and Writeous Soul.  The museum's Faith Morris is the moderator.


10-Minute Transition

  • 8:30 – 9:30 pm    Open Mic for workshop participants & facilitators


For inquiries contact media@civilrightsmuseum.org.