Black Alphabet and The Esteem Awards Celebrate Black Pride with Chicago Poetry Slam

Chicago, IL (June 12, 2023) – Black Alphabet and The Esteem announced today launch of their first annual poetry slam event in celebration of Black Pride. Coming on July 3 at Chicago’s Sidetrack Video Bar, it is sponsored by the Chicago Department of Public Health, Sidetrack, DCASE, AIDS Foundation Chicago, and AIDS Health Foundation. The event is free and open to the public.

The Esteem Awards is dedicated to promoting positive images of the African American/People of Color, Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer/Questioning (LGBTQ)+ communities. Black Alphabet NFP is a nonprofit organization committed to promoting equity awareness on behalf of the Black LGBTQ+ community through the use of media and the arts.

Poetry slam participants must be 21+ years of age and pre-submit a three-minute (or less) video poem for consideration. Selected finalists will compete from

1-3 PM CDT on July 3, vying for a $2,023 grand prize. The Sidetrack Video Bar is located at 3349 N Halsted St., Chicago, IL.

Any style of poetry is welcome at the event, but the author must be involved in performing their own poem if selected as a finalist. All performances must be three minutes or less, and poets do not need to memorize their poems. No props or costumes are allowed at the event, and performances cannot include pre-recorded music or sound effects, but poets can perform their own sounds by beatboxing, singing, clapping, or using their body in other ways.

To learn more, RSVP to attend the event, or submit a video poem for consideration, visit:

About Black Alphabet

Since launching Chicago’s first Black LGBTQ film festival in 2013, Black Alphabet has worked to encourage storytelling, cultivate new dialogues, and educate communities about the cultural and social contributions that Black LGBTQ-identified people have made upon the world. The nonprofit organization advocates for social equity by creating and spreading awareness of issues uniquely or disproportionately impacting the Black LGBT+ community.

Media contact: Adam McMath, Executive Director |