Poetry Ambassadors

Poetry Ambassadors

Cambridge Arts and the City of Cambridge are pleased to announce an exciting opportunity for poets to engage with the community. Rather than a single 'figurehead' position for poetry in Cambridge, Poetry Ambassadors will be engaged to develop programs highlighting the rich diversity of literary arts happening in the City.

The deadline for the 2017 call for Poetry Ambassadors has passed.
The 2017 Poetry Ambassadors will be announced shortly.

2016 Cambridge Arts Poetry Ambassadors

The goal of the Cambridge Arts Poetry program is to create opportunities for the Cambridge community to engage with and promote poetry from diverse backgrounds & styles.

Poetry Ambassadors will be selected via an open call for proposals.

Applicants are asked to prepare & submit proposals for consideration for one of the four event openings in 2017. All styles of creative writing, from Page to Stage and everything in between, are welcome to submit.

It is the responsibility of the person selected as a Poetry Ambassador to:

  • Create a program and select poets to participate, 2-3 feature poets in addition to organizing poet
  • Identify a theme for the program that participating poets can work around and off of
  • Identify and secure a venue (Venues must be ADA accessible. Cambridge Arts has a list of possible free venues and can assist in initial contact)
  • Coordinate with the venue around specifics
  • Coordinate with Cambridge Arts on marketing and promotion for event
  • Keep time, manage event, and prepare features and open mic readers accordingly to ensure professionalism and keep event running smoothly
    • All events must include a 30 minute period at the beginning of the program for Community Open Mic, Open Mic poems should also be on selected theme
    • Smash Ups/Mash Ups of different genres, styles, and types of poetry and art forms are strongly encouraged
    • Preference will be given to proposals that have the potential to challenge the aesthetics of participating artists and audience members alike
    • Events should be kept ‘PG13’ where possible to be more community oriented and mindful of a broad potential audience, however, more adult programs will be considered if proposal outlines intentions & plans accordingly.
    • Events should be free and open to the public
    • Selected poets will received a small honorarium of $250 for the work they do in conjunction with the program.
  • Applicants must currently reside in Cambridge, MA to be eligible
  • Any self-identifying poet, lyricist, or writer is encouraged to apply

Proposals should include:

  • A brief personal statement/bio (no more than 1 page)
  • Resume/CV (no more than 2 pages)
  • 5 samples of the writing (no more than 15 pages written or 15 minutes if audio/visual file)
  • A brief program statement describing:
    • The type of program you propose
    • What themes you might ask participating poets to work with
    • How you might manage the open mic portion of the event
    • In what season/quarter you would be interested in doing your event
    • A preliminary list of feature poets is welcome but NOT required at time of proposal. A lack of feature poets will not negatively impact approval of proposals.
Cambridge Arts has created a tip sheet for organizers that includes pointers on managing and open mic, event timing, and free to low cost venues around the city. For questions, contact Julie Barry, Director of Community Arts, 617-349-4381 or jbarry@cambridgema.gov