Three-time world champion spoken word artist Buddy Wakefield will make a rare appearance in Birmingham this month, on 20th August, when he performs at the city’s upcoming ‘Hubb Debates’ event in Sparkbrook.

The Hubb Debates is a novel event format that combines open public debate on contentious issues with spontaneous performances from musicians and performance artists of international regard.

The theme chosen for August’s Hubb Debate is ‘The Age of Hatred’, Hosted by University of Warwick Associate Professor Dr James Hodkinson.

Buddy Wakefield, whose wider UK tour begins on August 15, will both respond to, and provoke the debate through a series of spoken word performances throughout.

Wakefield has previously featured on the BBC, HBO’s Def Poetry Jam, ABC Radio National and is currently signed to Ani DiFranco’s Righteous Babe Records. In 2004 he won the Individual World Poetry Slam Finals, and has since gone on to share stages with nearly every notable performance poet in the world.

The event is produced by Soul City Arts, an organisation fast becoming known for their fearlessness in delivering arts projects that address weighty topics and political taboos.  Previous Hubb Debates have tackled immigration, racial integration, state surveillance and terrorism.

According to organisers, the debate “will address an apparent diminishing of empathy in contemporary society”.

Soul City Arts artistic director, Mohammed Ali MBE is a renowned international graffiti artist and recipient of the prestigious South Bank Award.

Speaking on his motivation in exploring the topic of empathy, Ali said:

“Recent events, such as the Grenfell Tower fire and the attack on worshipers outside Finsbury Park Mosque, elicited in some quarters, responses that seemed utterly lacking in humanity – many charged with xenophobic sentiment.

“The only way we can address issues of cultural and societal division is by coming together and communicating. We provide a safe space for those difficult conversations to take place.’


‘Hubb Debates: The Age of Hatred’ takes place at 2pm on Sunday 20th August at the Hubb Art Space, located at the Bordeseley Centre, Sparkhill, Birmingham B11 1AR.

Entry is Free, as is the hot food and drink that’s served after the debate. Check out the Hubb Debates Facebook event page for more information.



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