x = independently organized TED event

Theme: TEDxGreenvilleSalon: Slam!

This event occurred on
October 11, 2016
Greenville, South Carolina
United States

Want to explore the art and power of Poetry Slam? Listen for your voice.

This year, Greenville Slam celebrates 20 years of promoting literary arts and creativity in Greenville! Join two members of the original Greenville Slam Team, Vera Gómez and Kimberly Simms, and learn how the magic of this movement inspired their own voices and the many diverse voices poetry slam offers a stage.

This TEDx Salon features a high energy, curated poetry slam (ala National Poetry Slam style) as well as a TED Talk and a discussion on how poetry slam continues to define Greenville as a national hub for arts and culture.

Our Poets

Vera Gomez and Kimberly Simms were integral members of the original Greenville Slam Team who made history at the National Poetry Slam as the first all-women team in 1997 and who took the Regional Championship at the 1998 Southern Fried Poetry Slam. Both poets continue to inspire youth in our community through their work with the Metropolitan Arts Councils’ SmartArts program and the Peace Center’s Peace Voices program.

VERAGOMEZ. Vera Gómez, who’s a firm believer in the power of words, is a published poet, performer, and staple of Greenville’s literary arts scene. She is the current president of Emrys, which runs a monthly reading series, open mic and publishes the annual Emrys Journal. Learn more about her at

KIMBERLYSIMMS. Pioneering poetry slams since 1994, Kimberly Simms was inducted as a Legend of the South in 2016 by the National Poetry Slam. In 2002, she founded non-profit Wits End Poetry, which manages the Greenville Poetry Slam and a weekly open mic. She is the 2016 Carl Sandburg NHS Writer-in-Residence. Learn more about her at

D.DOVE. D. Dove is an actor, musician, and spoken word artist who was a member of the 2016 Greenville Slam Team that recently placed 4th at the Southeast Regional and semi-finals at the National Poetry Slam.

NATEHAMES. Nate Hames is a seasoned spoken word artist, a member of the 2015 Greenville Slam Team, a Sergeant in the US Army, and a veteran of the Iraq war.

ALEXANDRAHARRIS. Alexandra Harris is a native Hoosier and Furman senior with a passion for affordable housing development, coffee, and, of course, poetry.

JENICEPLEASANT. Jenice Pleasant is a singer-songwriter, poet, and visual artist who has been a member of two Greenville slam teams. She is known for beautifully weaving music into her jazz inspired poetry.

BLAQSOCRATES. BlaQ Socrates is a classically trained vocalist and spoken word artist and activist. A student at University of South Carolina Upstate, he is majoring in African American Studies and Gender with a minor in English.

924 S. Main Street
Greenville, South Carolina, 29601
United States
Event type:
Salon (What is this?)
See more ­T­E­Dx­Greenville­Salon events


Speakers may not be confirmed. Check event website for more information.

Kimberly Simms

Kimberly Simms is an award winning poet, performer, and writer as well as an arts integration expert. She is the 2016 Carl Sandburg Writer-in-Residence, a member of the SC Humanities Council’s Speakers Bureau, a South Carolina Arts Commission Approved Artist, and a SMART Arts teaching artist. Her poetry has appeared in Poem, The South Carolina Review, The Asheville Poetry Review, The John Edward Johnson Prize from The Poetry Society of SC, and many more. Her work is included in the South Carolina Poetry Archives at Furman University. She was a member of the Greenville Slam Team that won the South East Regional Poetry Slam in 1998. Simms has a master's degree in English from Clemson University with a Creative Writing Thesis, as well as a bachelor's in English from Furman University. You can learn more about her at

Organizing team


Greenville, SC, United States