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Alitfest - Abuja Literature Festival, Abuja Literary Society

Slam poetry guidelines



The ​Abuja Literary and Arts Festival 2020 being organized by the ​Abuja Literary Society will feature a series of events, seminars, presentations, exhibitions and the popular POETRY SLAM competition​. This year, the ​festival will be hosted online due to the ongoing COVID-19 restrictions​, abiding by all safety guidelines.



The ​slam will also be hosted online and take on a slightly different approach in line with the ‘’new normal.” Considering the challenges associated with online events, we seek to minimise breaks in transmissions and time lags during performances.



  • Poets will fill an online form indicating interest to participate in the slam.
  • As part of the online interest form, a submission of one poem is required for selection purposes
  • The shortlisted participants from the pool of applications will be notified by 2nd August, 2020



Only ​poets who have emerged as finalists in a slam anywhere in the world are eligible for this competition. Applicants will be required to provide verifiable proof (video/article links, etc.) to demonstrate this during submission.


  • In order to minimise the impact of network connection issues, the participants are required to send pre-recorded videos of their performances which will be played at each round
  • The final round will feature live performances, with back up pre-recorded videos. In the event of a break in transmission, the pre-recorded video will be played

2020 Prizes

#ALITFEST20 Slam Competition

1st prize
N200, 000







Here are some of our rules

Rules for slam poets


This is how we request your videos

1. Each participant must submit 3 videos each:
a. A video not exceeding 1 minute for the First round
b. A video not exceeding 2 minutes for the Second round
c. A video not exceeding 3 minutes for the Third round
2. Clearly name your video in the format ‘’POEM TITLE – POET NAME’’ (You can also edit your video to include this but not required.)
3. Create a word/PDF contact document (to be submitted with your 3-video entry) listing:
a. Title of the poems indicating which poem is for which round.
b. Your full name, email address, and telephone number.
c. Your stage name
d. Evidence of eligibility (link to videos or articles that clearly identifies you as a finalist in a previous slam).
4. Each submission must include a duly executed video release consent form giving ALS the right to use and publish submitted videos, or excerpts therefrom, on all its platforms for marketing and promotion purposes.

5. For submission, create a google drive folder and name it in the format ‘’ALITFEST SLAM 2020 – POET NAME’’. Upload your videos, contact document and duly executed consent form to this google drive folder and share a link to the folder with (email address).
6. Each video should be recorded using a mobile phone or a digital camera.
7. Each video must consist only of you reading or performing a single poem.
8. Ensure your videos are of good quality (i.e, clearly show your face, and capture any movements necessary to your performance), but they do not need to be of professional quality. However, it is particularly important that the audio is clear and distinct.

9. Videos must not be edited to include any sort of soundtrack(s), illustrative image(s), cut-aways, fade-ins or fade-outs or any sort of transitions designed to cover up or smoothen over errors in performance, or to otherwise enhance the performance. We want to see the unedited performance. This does not mean you must send your first-take. You can send your final-take, after as many trials as you want. But the final-take must show the unedited performance, without interruption, from start to finish, and without any digital enhancements.
10. It is a single performer contest. Each poem must be performed by a single person.
11. The videos must not infringe on any third-party intellectual property rights. You must perform your original work and where you involve other people to help with the recording, they must know you intend to enter the video into the ALITFEST SLAM, and you must have their permission to do so. Except in cases where you have contracted them to do the recording, in which case you must ensure, in entering your videos for the ALITFEST SLAM, that you comply with the terms of your contract with them.
12. Videos that have been previously published elsewhere are eligible, so long as they are consistent with all the ALITFEST SLAM guidelines for video submissions.

These are some basic rules to #ALITFEST20 Slam Poetry

Our rules of engagement are really simple! If you have any questions, get back to us on

Rules 1 - 3

  1. The ALS Slam consists of 3 rounds.
  2. Contestants must prepare 3 poems in case they advance to the 2nd and 3rd rounds.
  3. Poems can be on any subject and in any style.

Rules 4 - 6

  • Each poem must be an original piece written and performed by the author.
  • Performances are timed and should not exceed:
    • (a) 1 minute for the First Round;
    • (b) 2 minutes for the Second Round; and
    • (c) 3 minutes for the Third Round.
  • No props are allowed.

Rules 7 - 10

  • No costumes are allowed.
  • No musical instruments (leave the drum set out) or pre-recorded music are allowed.
  • Each poem may only be used ONCE during the competition.
  • Speak up and clearly (we want to hear you and know what you are saying).


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