PHOENIX, AZ – Urban AZ’s 1st Annual Spoken Word Showcase features Jessica Holter (Punany Poets), Karolina Breeze, Jeary Sylves, Truth B Told and Wisdom Soul with special guests R&B artists Dwele and Bilal (with band) at 8:30 p.m. on Friday, May 18th at the intimate Celebrity Theatre.

What’s Not To Love” about Dwele? The Grammy nominated R&B singer-songwriter-multi-instrumentalist-producer was born February 14, 1978. He cites Stevie Wonder, Donny Hathaway, Roy Ayers, Miles Davis, and Freddie Hubbard as favorite artists, and took inspiration from hip hop group A Tribe Called Quest. He became an MC and worked with Slum Village. The Detroit native and Kanye West collaborator released his fifth studio album in 2012 called Greater Than One. 

Bilal is noted for his wide vocal range, his work across multiple genres, and his live performances. The Philadelphia native has an extensive list of collaborations including Common, Erykah Badu, Jay-Z, J Dilla, The Roots and many others. In 2011, Bilal received a Grammy nomination for the song “Little One,” a track dedicated to his eldest son, who has autism. In 2012, his 4th studio album, A Love Surreal, debuted at #1 on iTunes' R&B Chart.

Featured spoken word poets include Jessica Holter, host and founder of the high charged production of the Punany Poets, a mix of comedy, politics and sexual satire. Holter’s theater group has appeared on HBO’s Real Sex, Black Entertainment Television, Playboy TV, London’s Channel 5 and Cinemax. Holter, aka Ghetto Girl Blue, will share the spotlight with a variety of spoken word performers including Serena Richardson, aka Wisdom Soul, whose poetic style gained her the title "Diva." Wisdom currently hosts her own online radio show called "The VYBe" on, and was instrumental in organizing and hosting Arizona’s first All Female Hip Hop Showcase. Wisdom had appeared on Showtime at the Apollo, BET/Comic View, Eve Ensler’s “Vagina Monologues” and many others. Adding to the evening’s line-up is winner of the Spoken Word Album of the Year award at the 2012 National Poetry Awards, Truth B Told (for LTV2: The Death & Rebirth of Christopher Owen); as well as creative artist, rhyme sayer and singer Jeary Sylves, who has worked with Rapper Pooh and Def Poets Black Ice & Shiham, he just released Jeary For Dolo; and up and coming spoken word poet Karolina Breeze.

Doors open at 6:30 p.m. $15 for General Admission; $20 and $35 for Reserved Seating. Tickets are on sale now at Celebrity Theatre or online at To charge by phone, call 602-267-1600 ext. 1. All tickets are subject to a surcharge. Celebrity Theatre is located 4 blocks south of the Loop 202 freeway, at 440 N. 32nd St., in Phoenix.

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