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Join us for for GriffinSpeak’s first spoken word and poetry event at the Institute of Postcolonial Studies, featuring Awale Ahmed and Alushka Rajararam

In time and space with GriffinSpeak 

Spoken word with Awale Ahmed and Alushka Rajararam

GriffinSpeak, convened by poets Sharifa A Tartoussi and Aamon Sayed, is back in person after a two-year hiatus and is kicking off with not one, but two powerhouse features in our new home at the Institute of Postcolonial Studies in North Melbourne. 

We are thrilled to have Alushka Rajaram and Awale Ahmed on the night, who will be joining us to start a new era of storytelling placing people who have been on the margins, particularly BIPOC people, at its centre.



Please book to attend.

When you book via Eventbrite you’ll be sent tix via email, please print out or show on the night, we will also have tix on the door for sale.

Open Mic

We are also back with spaces on the open mic, 3-5 minute slots, in which to share to your heart’s content

If you’d like to hop on the open mic please let the GriffinSpeak organisers know, DM them via Instagram, or let them know on the day (we are so flex).


Unfortunately, IPCS is not fully wheelchair accessible with a large step into the space from the back entrance and a short flight of stairs from the front. Toilets are also up a flight of stairs from our main space. We apologise for the inconvenience.

We acknowledge that GriffinSpeak and its related activities take place on the land of the Wurundjeri people of the Kulin Nation. We acknowledge that the tradition of oral story originated with the first nations people of this land, we acknowledge that sovereignty was never ceded and this always was, and always will be, Aboriginal land.

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Date: 17 September 2022
Time: 6:00 pm - 9:00 pm Location: Ashis Nandy Room, IPCS

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Aamon Sayed Alushka Rajararam Awale Ahmed GriffinSpeak IRL poetry Sharifa A Tartoussi spoken word



Alushka Rajaram

is the founder of ‘Speak your soul’, an audio-visual performance event for women of colour. She entered the poetry scene by winning Slamalamadingdong in August 2016 and opening for Anthony Anaxagorou during his Melbourne performance of his Australian tour. She was also the sacrificial poet for the Victorian heat of the Australian poetry slam in 2016. Her first anthology of poems ‘Stardust’ was published earlier this year.

Awale Ahmed

is a multilingual writer and a storyteller who shares stories through the medium of poetry and storytelling. Awale was born in Somalia had to leave his birth country due to the civil war. He grew up in the middle east (Saudi Arabia) and recently migrated to Australia. He firmly believes that artists in general are the true guardians of our creativity, childhood spirit and imagination. He believes in the power of sharing the human experience and spreading joy and happiness to others. Also, he is an advocate for social justice, asylum seekers and refugee rights.

Sharifa A Tartoussi

is a poet and spoken word artist based in Naarm (Melbourne). Their journey as an artist has seen them become the first Arab Muslim afab person to be crowned the Australian Poetry Slam Victorian Champion in 2017, perform as an opener for Sierra DeMulder as part of the Melbourne Spoken Word Showcase in 2017, as well as featuring at many festivals around the country. Their written work has been published in local and international literary magazines, most notably Cordite Poetry Review in late 2019. They also co-founded GriffinSpeak, a quarterly spoken word poetry event that preferentially champions the voices of marginalised communities. They have since moved on to become one of the creative procedures of Slamalamadingdong. Their first chapbook, Colourblind, was released in 2018 and explored issues of identity and belonging.

Aamon Sayed

comes from a background of community work and welfare and since 2012 works on impactful grassroots programs that seek to change the very fabric of community. Aamon looks introspectively at his upbringing in the rough areas of south West Sydney, together with insights gained through study and practice in social work, to create pathways for the current and next generations to discover themselves. As a multi-disciplinary artist, Aamon’s mission is to create spaces where we can collectively make sense of ourselves in the world we are living in. He aims to do this by highlighting achievement, conversation and understanding.