Our Bodies, Our Voices, Our Open Mic was held at Tsunami Books and sponsored by Siren. Siren, named after the Greek mythological sea nymphs who use the power of voice and song to lure sailors to their demise, is a local nonprofit organization. According to the website, it is the “nation’s first spoken word performance educational organization dedicated solely to girls.” The event’s organizer and host, Melissa Rose, said they have had a variety of acts from poetry, music, singing and stand-up comedy to a hula-hooping, performance art and dance. Anyone that identifies as female is encouraged to use spoken word and all forms of creative expression.
The event opened with two featured performers. The first, a musical duo, was a Japanese bluegrass musician named Machiko Shirai, singing and playing guitar while accompanied by Rambling Robert, a banjo player from local radio station KRVM. Leigh Anne Jasheway, a hilarious featured comic, followed.
Catering to a full house, many others performed a variety of poetry, music accompanied by song and comedy expelling a variety of personal feelings through the arts.
Siren has an office at the Public House in Springfield and collaborates with other nonprofit organizations. They will sponsor four events at Tsunami Books this year, with the two remaining performances falling on March 15 and April 19.