Victoria-Anne Bulley is a British-born Ghanaian poet and writer based in London.

She is an alumna of the Barbican Young Poets and is a member of the Burn After Reading collective, established by poet Jacob Sam-La Rose. In 2010, her poem The Photograph was published in the anthology Did I Tell You? 131 Poems for Children in Need, alongside the work of Patience Agbabi.

Graduating from the University of Kent in 2013 with a BA in English and Drama, she is currently pursuing an MA in Postcolonial Studies at SOAS, University of London.

Her work is an exploration of the limits of knowledge and the body; cultural origins and a search for wholeness. She is working towards her first collection.

Mpho Khosi

Scribe, Poet, Author, Story Teller and Father.

Born on the 11th of July 1982, a product of Wattville in Benoni to start school and that is where he discovered his love for poetry.

Mpho co-published a poetry and art anthology with Frank Lekwana “PORTRAITS OF PROPAGANDA”; as a test to see if the two could self-publish. In 2011 After a 5 year break he returned to poetry and mid year in 2011 he put his words to the test on the Word N Sound stage, he emerged as one of the top ten performers with poems such as ”Encounter with love” and “I refuse”, these would also appear in his anthology “QUIETLYloud” in the same year. He also performed at the first Word N Sound festival and also went to perform in Swaziland, State Theatre in Pretoria, Durban. He also performed at different slam competitions and open mic events.

In 2012/2013 Mpho Khosi has performed on different stages, from performing at the Words Up event hosted by Linda Gabriel and the Goethe institute at the King Kong Theatre. He was recently invited to be part of the Read-a-thon and Literacy Celebration week hosted by the Ekurhuleni library. He also took part in the first ever “Slam For Your Life” event; where he went up against 5 of the current hottest poetry slammers in Johannesburg.

He is a mentor for up and coming Poets from around Westonaria High Schools, giving back to them and tutoring them, while they are also teaching him a thing ot two. He has also been a part of the DoGoodInc, which deals in giving back to the community, by donating books and other reading material.

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Lesedi Thwala

Lesedi Thwala is a 20-year-old female, born in Itsoseng but grew up in a small town called Lichtenburg in the North West Province. She is currently doing her first year of her Bachelor of Arts at Rhodes University. A die-hard feminist, Motswako rapper and recovering book worm, Lesedi’s love for poetry began as an escape from the challenges she faced in life until a friend discovered one of her poems and forced her to recite it for a group of people. Lesedi is passionate about South African literature and dreams of becoming an author someday.

Blaq Pearl

Blaq Pearl has performed with her band at Jazzathon and various city concerts particularly in Mitchell’s Plain. Having featured on television program Hectic 9nine and Keeping it Real, she is working on releasing unique designed T-shirt merchandise on Currently Blaq Pearl is in the studio completing her album to be released this year.

She aspires to contribute to positive change in South Africa’s current state regarding the music industry and youth empowerment. To be successful and inspire upcoming artists & musicians and to to grow immensely and continuously in her musical talents and self.

Her poetry and music entails social content, controversial /tabooed issues and is about empowerment and real experiences + strength and motivation. She describes her music genre as a fusion of African/ Soul / Jazz / Hip Hop/ R&B.

Natasha Tafari

Natasha Tafari considers herself a Hip Hop poet and is driven by her observance of life. She feels that artists serve as a medium of expressing the spiritual essence of life through various creative mediums. Poets express with Words, Expression and Resonance. Natasha Tafari is also a singer, songwriter, scriptwriter, emcee and events manager.

Natasha has organized her own events including Wordsworthsaying (2010), Hip hop custodians and Community jam. She has facilitated workshops at the Grahamstown festival, Artscape theatre in Cape Town and the Language commission. She has performed across venues in Cape Town including the Sparkling Women’s Gathering, WordsWorthSaying Raga’zzi, Verses and the former Badilisha’s Fireword Fridays.

Nama Xam

Pseudonyms: Nama Xam ( Xam – pronounced Gam / Jy7even (Pronounced – Jey sev-uhn) / Syllabic / isja! /
! Ga re’ (Listen)

With charged lyrics reflecting and animating the experiences of a young Khoe Khoen and Bushman (1st indigenous people of sub Saharan Africa) trying to survive within a marginalising system, this is the Poetry and music of Nama Xam.

Nama Xam has always been into music one way or the other. Since a young age he has been receiving instruction in classical piano, later moving to Jazz and at this time being influenced by the urban music revolution happening within the ghettos of the Cape Flats. He recalls,” I was introduced to Hip Hop through the dubbed cassettes my brother had featuring artists such as Public Enemy, X clan, LL Cool J, NWA. I was hooked! I started to frequent spaces where Hip Hop was. The benefit of growing up in Mitchell’s plain (an apartheid Group Areas Act scheme) was that Hip Hop was everywhere”. He then became a member of the Universal Zulu Nation and started with break dancing not knowing that he’d return to it later in his life being a student of Capoeira. Capoeira is the mother of break dancing.

Over the years Nama Xam has been producing and performing with many artists such as Jean Pierre (!Khu-aob), Streetmatterphysics (School Of Thought), Blaq Pearl, Brandon Florus (Flo4Soul), Ej Von Lyrik (Godessa), Dj Azhul (BVK), Brendan Adams ( Adam Speaks), Linkris, SiepSokkie, Chase Lutron and Perspektif and many more. Also doing community edutaiment drives through park jams on the Cape Flats such as Mitchells Plain, Kuilsriver, Belhar, Lavender hill and Eerste River. Nama Xam is the founding member of the group Jy!7 (pronounced – Jey sev-uhn) and along with partner Flo4Soul bring “soulfully social” music to the people. As a poet Nama Xam has been a regular at the Verses poetry session and the group jy!7.ven has featured as well.
Through record company African Dope records he was given the chance to remix a track of Cape Town based group Moodphase 5. The track is called Violation. It featured on the 2005 release called African Dope which won a SAMA (South African Music Award) for that year.

Performances that Nama Xam has been involved in:


National Arts and Culture Awards, UWC Poetry Festival

Red Cross Society annual Christmas outreach show
Live performances for Gam Sushi @ Obs Café

The Wonders of Being Out There (WoBoT) @ Zula Soundbar
Halman Walk Youth Development annual Christmas outreach in Hanover Park
Neutral Ground @ Katalist
CVET gig @ Athlone technical college
Friends of Cuba fundraiser @ Salt River community centre
Verses @ Zula Soundbar
Youth day Gig @ Alliance Frances

Launch of the Western Cape Music Association’s Benevolent fund
All Elements Hip Hop gig @ North Pine Community Hall

Nekkies Hip Hop Festival

Infecting the City festival


Best of Ekapa Hip Hop underground

At present Nama Xam is busy with recording his solo album titled – The Chastising of Xam.

Khadija Heeger

Khadija Tracey Carmelita Heeger was born Cape Town. She was raised on the Cape Flats in the township of Hanover Park. She started performing when she was nine years old, her dream was to be an actress, but at 15, she started writing seriously and this is how she expresses herself now. She is a well-known and popular performance poet.

In 2007 she was commissioned to write a multidisciplinary theatrical poetry piece in collaboration with indigenous soundscape artists, Khoikonnexion, for the Spier Poetry Festival in 2008. These performances were greeted with standing ovations. This piece was later taken to Grahamstown Festival in 2009 (funded by the National Arts Council of South Africa).

Beyond the Delivery Room is her first collection of poems. Beyond the Delivery Room is the first part in a trilogy called Separation Anxiety. She is currently writing the second, Blood Words, following the crooked lines of DNA. She has also performed in Amherst in the USA, as part of an artist’s exchange programme.

Loftus Marais

The work of Paarl born poet and publicist, Loftus Marais is visual and ironic, rebelling against a traditional Afrikaans poetry, while also acknowledging the handed-down Afrikaans belief in the poet as craftsman, in the importance of formal, structural and musical elements. This makes his poetry a complex modulation of a voice that is both lyrical and bitter, sombre and comical, nostalgic and ultra-contemporary. After being published in several anthologies, his debut collection of poems, Staan in die algemeen nader aan vensters, was published to high acclaim.

Lara Kirsten

Lara Kirsten is a pianist and performance poet. She balances the strict discipline of the art music with the writing and performance of her own poetry in Afrikaans and English. On occasion she combines her poetry with movement, visual art, photography and music.

In August 2007 she made her debut as a performance poet with the one-woman piece Ingrid Jonker Dans Weer. She performed her first extensive installation art and poetry piece, Frames, at the Fook Festival in Somerset-East in 2008. This work consisted of eight poems which were performed in eight different rooms with dialoguing installation art, costume and movement. In 2009 she made her debut in The Netherlands in the show Op het Punt van Aanraken (featuring music improvised by Francois le Roux, photography by Carmen Gonzalez and poems written and performed by Lara). In 2009 she was commissioned to write and perform poetry for the 60th Anniversary of the Voortrekker Monument Pretoria, taking a strong view on what it is to be an Afrikaner today. In September of 2010 and 2011 she had the privilege to perform as pianist and poet in the Baxter concert hall in Cape Town. In 2012 a highlight was performing in the Guy Butler theatre at The Settler’s Monument in Grahamstown. She has been invited to write and perform poetry for part of the opening ceremony for the International Aquarium Congress hosted at the CTICC (Cape Town International Convention Centre) in September 2012. From 2010 to 2012 Lara has conceived and performed one-woman poetry happenings at the annual AfrikaBurn festival hosted in the Tankwa Karoo in the Northern Cape.In 2014 she was invited to perform as pianist and poet at the McGregor Poetry Festival. Since 2009 Lara has performed as featured poet at the Off the Wall poetry sessions in Observatory, Cape Town.

Since 2007 Lara’s poetry has been published in various editions of the South African Literary Journal New Contrast. In 2008 she became part of the Eastern Cape poet-group, Ecca, who presents readings and publishes collectively each year.

For more on Lara’s music career, poetry, photos and creative projects please visit her blog at


Jitsvinger (Quintin Goliath) is an Afrikaaps vernacular and Kyknet Fiestas award winning performer.

He released his debut album Skeletsleutel in 2006. Jitsvinger has collaborated on various projects such as the inter-continental exchange, Rogue State Alliance and Each One Teach One. His versatility has taken him to Holland, Switzerland and Taiwan, where he has performed at international festivals such as the Migration Music Festival, Rock the Docks, Funk Em See, the Buskers Festival, and AfroVibes Festival.

Locally Jitsvinger has performed at acclaimed poetry festivals including Speak the Mind, Poetry Africa, the Cape Town Book Fair, and Spier Poetry Festival. Musically he has performed at Oppiekoppie, Obs Fest, and Cape Town Festival, to name a few.

Jitsvinger composed the music and lyrics for the popular theatre comedy production Joe Barber 5 and is also part of the cast of the critically acclaimed Afrikaaps.


Jethro Louw

Jethro is a poet from Cape Town, born in Beaufort West in the Eastern Cape. He lives in a township. He is a ghetto poet, largely considered to be the godfather of spoken word in Cape Town. And alongside poets such as Lesego Rampolokeng, Mzwakhe Mbuli and Mzwandile Matiwana, he ranks as one of the nation’s key voices, a noteable “word-bomber”. Jethro uses the power of his words to bring back to life the discontinued heritage of his culture. His work revitalises the legacy of stories and the wealth of storytellers of the KhoiSan people. For centuries, the members of this community have been silenced by the gun and the bullet and the wall. The results are a lack of formal skills and access to infrastructure to turn those skills into income, subsequently a lack of identity and self esteem.

Jethro Louw’s compositions and performances feature on Volume One of the Coffeebeans Routes’ Bootleg Series, by the Khoi Khollektif, in collaboration with several Cape Town acts. The tracks are all live recordings from shows in Cape Town between 2004 and 2007. Jethro also features on the Goemarati compilation, with his track In a Third World, a collaboration with Black Rose.

Gert Vlok Nel

Gert Vlok Nel came to the attention of South Africans in 1994 with his debut work Om te Lewe is Natuurlik (To Live is Natural), for which he received the coveted Ingrid Jonker Prize for exceptional debut poetry. Vlok Nel paints personal portraits of his childhood in Beaufort-West and writes lyrics that are of a haunting, bewitching, almost hypnotic quality in unusual, innovative Afrikaans.

Annelie De Wet

Annelie De Wet works as a freelance journalist, copy writer, scriptwriter, translator, editor & educational video maker.

In 2004 she began training as a Sangoma in Pondoland by way of a calling that changed her life. Poetry became the only way in which she could express this mystical journey and personal healing process. Currently learning isiXhosa and training in Family Constellation Therapy, spiritual and cultural pioneering is her life’s passion.

Adrian Different van Wyk

Adrian “Diff” Van Wyk is a poet, master’s student and facilitator from Kuilsriver, Cape Town. Since 2011 he has curated and produced the monthly InZync Poetry Sessions, organising over 40 shows for the poetry platform. He also acts as a workshop facilitator for the INKredible writing workshop, a weekly creativewriting workshop offered to young writers from the Cape Winelands region. In 2015 he was nominated as one of 200 young South Africans to watch by the Mail & Guardian newspaper in the Arts and Culture category. In May 2015, Diff, travelled with InZync to London in collaboration with the Roundhouse Theatre performing at the Last Word Spoken Word Festival and collaborating on the #TalkingDoorsteps video poetry project. Diff has featured at Mcgregor Poetry Festival, Woordfees, Word N Sound International Youth Poetry Festival, Oppikoppie Music Festival, Open Book Festival and many other expression platforms. You can catch “Diff” at the monthly InZync Session or standing to the left of you waiting to drop a verse in a cypher.

Pieter Odendaal

Pieter Odendaal started out as a boerseun in Bloemfontein and has a BA and half of an abandoned BSc-degree. He is the co-founder and project manager of SLiP, the Stellenbosch Literary Project, which creates and nourishes analogue and digital platforms of creative engagements with words. The project’s website focuses on contemporary South African books, “poetries”, cultures and initiatives around multilingualism and translation. He also co-coordinates the popular InZync Poetry Sessions and high school poetry workshops with his partner in rhyme, Adrian Different.

He hopes to publish his debut poetry collection sometime soon. A handful of his Afrikaans poems appeared in Nuwe Stemme 5 (2013). In 2015, he’ll be studying things about sustainable development and how to save the world.

Shirmoney Rhode

Shirmoney Rhode is a young writer, poet and performer. She grew up in Elsies River, Cape Town. Many of her works reflect on her childhood experiences and give voice to the things that she experienced and continues to experience. She has seven of her poems published in 7de Re‘nboog, compiled by Florris Brown.

She has performed the works of various poets at seminars together with Prof Antjie Krog of the University of the Western Cape. She was also performed alongside Mak Manaka and Karin Schimke at the Badilisha Poetry X-change’s 100 Thousand Poets for Change.

She is studying at the University of the Western Cape and has recently completed her honours in Afrikaans & Nederlands. She is currently completing her post graduate diploma in education and thereafter she wants to pursue a career in journalism. She is passionate about what she does and uses her writing to inspire change; change of mind and change of heart.

Suné Ashlulita van Rooyen

Suné Ashlulita van Rooyen was born in the small town of Brandvlei in the heart of the Northern Cape. In 2010 she started her BA degree in Afrikaans and Nederlands and Psychology at the University of the Western Cape (UWC), which she completed in 2013. Currently she doing her Honours in Afrikaans and Nederlands also at UWC.

Suné aspires to be a teacher with the option of becoming a paediatric psychologist.


Skietreker ( Reitumetse Richard Segopolo Seape) is a poet, author and performer from Thabanchu in the Free State. He writes his metaphors and similes in English, Setswana, Sesotho and Afrikaans, penning about subjects relating to racism, discrimination, abuse, poverty, Aids, spirituality, love and social ills affecting the youth.

He has performed on stages like Macufe annual festival (2005). In 2007 his poem titled Spiritual Struggle was published in an anthology called A Prayer Away in Durban. He is also a former member of the poetry group Infinite Motions (2008). He has appeared on Frenzy (ETV), Street Journal (SABC 1) and Lentswe poetry project (SABC 2). He was also the founder of Boston Poetry Movement (2008) and the brains behind the initiative of Velocity open mic sessions at iBurst in Durban.

In 2009 he was awarded a certificate of appreciation by the Bloemfontein public library in recognition of valuable contribution to literature in the Free Sate. He published his first collection of poems titled Apartheid Ek Gaan Jou Boks in 2007 and in 2012 he received assistance from the department of Sports, Arts, Culture and Recreation to republish his power packed Apartheid Ek Gaan Jou Boks vol 2. He was also a volunteer for the SA Literary Awards 2012, and he also performed & rendered a creative writing, poetry workshop for Legae Primary School at Africa Century International African Writers Conference and shared a stage with Tinah Mnumzana, Lesego Motsepe, Hector Kunene and Charmaine Mrwebi.

Toni Stuart

Toni Stuart is a poetry writer, performer and developer. Her poetry has been published in numerous anthologies including The Ground’s Ear (Quickfox Publishing, 2011) and Agenda Journal on Teenage Fertility and Desire (Unisa Press and Routledge, 2011).

As a performer she was part of And the Word Was Woman Ensemble, from 2004 – 2007, with Malika Ndlovu and the 2010 Ingrid Jonker Prize winner Tania van Schalkwyk among others. She has performed locally and internationally, at numerous events including Urban Voices International Poetry Festival in 2010, Bridgewater International Poetry Festival in 2013, and alongside UK poet Lemn Sissay in 2012. Her work uses poetry to interrogate a range of social issues such as the stories of place and displacement (The Calllings Performance as part of GIPCA’ Exuberance Project, Emancipation Day Commemoration at Reminiscence Theatre Festival), HIV/Aids (commission of Breath and Blood for University of Cape Town) and gender-based violence (Woman.Object.Corpse exhibition for Centre for African Studies, UCT).

She is the curator of Poetica, at Open Book Festival 2013 and runs The Silence That Words Come From – writing workshops that enable people to explore their own voice.

In 2013, she was named in the Mail and Guardian’s list of 200 Inspiring Young South Africans for her work in co-founding I Am Somebody! – an NGO that uses storytelling and youth development to build integrated communities.