Festival Poetry Calabar 2017

Poets in Nigeria (PIN) and Festival Poetry Foundation (FPF) are pleased to announce the programme details for third edition of Festival Poetry Calabar. Themed “Drums of Poetry – Echoes & Prospects”, the annual poetry fiesta will hold in the city of Calabar from 21st – 23rd December, 2017.

The 3-day event is expected to draw lovers of literature and other art forms to Calabar while treating the residents of the city to an assortment of intellectual activities amid the merriment of the Calabar International Carnival. To this end, poetry, music, drama, cultural dance, art exhibitions and panel discussions will take centre stage at James Ene Henshaw Foundation situated at 4, Murtala Muhammed Highway, Calabar.

Headlining the event are notable poets, performance poets and musical artistes including Lawal Kafayat Gold, Kalejaye Folajimi, Prince Charles, Damilola Makinde, Clementina Owumi (The Solutionist), Steve McNaevets and many others. Notably, the keynote address ‘Drums of Poetry: Echoes & Prospects’ will be delivered by Dr. Tom Inyabri, a distinguished literary scholar, poet and lecturer at the University of Calabar. This will be followed by a literary discourse featuring Dr. Tom Inyabri, Dr. Peter Onwudinjo, Dr. Bassey Ekpenyong, Ene Edem, Onyekachi Peter (Moderator), on Christopher Okigbo’s Lament of the Drums. Additionally, the James Ene Henshaw Foundation will stage a play entitled Papa Geno and perform excerpts from ‘Eriata on Marble’, a collection of witty and mind-enriching verses by Sir Eriata Oribhabor.

In a brief chat with the publicity arm of PIN, the President of PIN and Director of FPF, Eriata Oribhabor said, “The initiative is an attempt to make poetry a socially responsible tool within a setting that favours literary offerings. Calabar will witness 3 days of exciting poetic activities and intellectual cleansing. We are delighted to be ending the year on a high note having unflinchingly pursued the mantra: poetry for service.”

Since inception in 2015, Festival Poetry Calabar has been championing a literary renaissance in the city of Calabar, with poetry firmly positioned at the base.

NOTE: Winners of the Ken Egbas Prize for Festival Poetry (Calabar 2017) will be announced on the PIN website (www.poetsinnigeria.org) shortly. The winners are expected to be at the festival to read their poems and be awarded cash prizes totaling ₦70,000.

Please find below the official programme of event:

Thursday 21st December

15:00 -18:00 – Arrival/ Registration

18:10 – 20:10 – Opening Ceremony/Calabar Welcomes

Welcome Remark – LOC, Chairman, Mr. Bassey Asuquo

Artistic flavors of Calabar



Friday 22nd December

10:00 – 10:15 – Introduction/Open mic

10:15 – 10:20 -The James Ene Henshaw Centre (JEHC) – James Ene Henshaw (Jnr)

10:20 – 10:35 – Opening Address – Mr. Eriata Oribhabor

10:35 – 12:15 – Keynote/Theme Address – Dr. Tom Inyabri

Questions & Answers/Responses


12:15 – 12:45 – Efik Folk Performance

12:45 – 13:45 – Break/Lunch/Exhibition hall

13:45 – 14:45 – Presentation/Panel Discussion of Christopher Okigbo’s Lament of the Drums


Dr. Peter Onwudinjo

Dr. Bassey Ekpenyong

Mr. Ene  Edem

Dr. Tom Inyabiri

Mr. Onyekachi Peter (Moderator)

15:10 – 17:00-Tour of Marina Resort/Slave Museum

18:00 – 18:30 – Operatic Performance by the James Henshaw Foundation

18:30 – 20:30 – Guest Poetry Reading and Performance


Saturday 23rd December

10:00 – 10:30 -Introduction/Open Mic

10:30 – 11:00 – Documentary Film

11:00 – 12:00 -Teen Poetry Reading /Performance

Featuring Teens from Calabar Teens

12:00 – 16:00

 -Break/ Lunch

17: 00 – 21: 00 – Poetry Rendition & Awards

–          Poetry Reading & Performance

–          Award of Ken Egbas Prize for Poetry

–          Music, Dance, etc.

–          Closing

For enquiries on participation, please contact Veralyn Chinenye: 09091959748.

Kolade Olanrewaju Freedom
For: PIN & FPF

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