Award-winning Slam Poet to Make UNA Appearance Through University Program Council

Mar. 24, 2011


FLORENCE, Ala. – Students and faculty at the University of North Alabama will soon get their chance to see slam poet and soul singer Shanelle Gabriel perform April 4 at 6 p.m. in the GUC Performance Center. The event is sponsored by University Program Council (UPC).

Gabriel, who is a Lupus awareness advocate, actress and writer, performs her work in the United States and across the world. She was featured on the sixth season of HBO’s Def Poetry Jam with musical artists Jill Scott and DMX and, in 2007, recorded a television promotion for the NFL Draft.

She will perform her poetry and songs at UNA and have a 15-minute Q&A session with the audience afterward. Jennifer Cravens, chair of UPC culture and education, said the one-hour event will feature topics that young people can connect with, such as love, relationships, self-esteem and empowerment.

“It’s going to be an entertaining show that relates to everyone,” Cravens said. “The crowds I’ve seen interact with her have really enjoyed it. We traditionally haven’t had a lot of slam poets here at UNA in the past. We want people to get exposed to that sort of entertainment and art.”

The event, which is free to all attendees, will be the second slam-poet event UPC has hosted in the last two years. UPC invited slam poets to work as emcees during last year’s Step Show and continues to encourage students to get involved in Open Mic nights.

Gabriel regularly tours the U.S. and the world and assists with creative writing workshops. She also debuted her spoken-word album “Start Something” in 2007, which was the winner of the 2008 Atlantic City Alternative Soul Best CD Award.

For more information about the event, contact University Program Council at 256-765-4248.