#33 - Masaki Takahashi & Grace Carras


SOOOO excited I got to hang out and podcast with Masaki Takahashi and Grace Carras from The 517 Poetry Room!! 💥🚀🙌

This is absolutely one of the coolest things I've been to in town.

Dylan Rogers from The Robin Theatre saw there was a need to showcase local poets, and sought out Masaki and Grace (both equally rad AF poets) to organize a group that would meet regularly to do readings. The Poetry Room quickly grew a following, providing an open mic poetry space to consistently packed audiences.

While it's mostly poets, they also allow musicians and comedians to participate. Masaki invited me to come perform at an open mic a few months ago, and the vibe there completely blew me away!

This is different than open mics musicians are used to participating in. You sign up ahead of time, and you get one poem/song/bit, so the night moves along quickly. Also, given that this is primarily poetry focused, the vibe is more intense, and people are INTENTLY listening to your lyrics. Without a doubt, it has helped me grow as a musician.

Whether you're a musician, poet, comedian, or just someone who appreciates artistry, you HAVE to check this place out. Their Season 2 opening on August 14th at The Robin Theatre is a great place to start!

We talk about The Poetry Room's beginnings, where it's headed, Lansing, and Grace won a competition and is getting her poem etched in the sidewalk in REO Town! How cool is that?! The unveiling of her poem, "for the poets who gather here," based on The Poetry Room, will be on Thursday August 30th at 7pm at the Lansing Art Gallery. You can find the Facebook event for dedication here!


PS -- Masaki and Grace would like to give a special shoutout to Ruelaine Stokes at the Lansing Poetry Club and Dennis Hinrichsen at the Lansing Poet Laureate for all of the work they do in fostering the growth of the poetry community!

PPS -- Also, here's a special shoutout to DJ Hieu, whose music is played between acts often at The Poetry Room open mic! Check out his music here 👉https://soundcloud.com/djhieu

Here's where you can find Masaki Takahashi, Grace Carras, and The Poetry Room online:

The Poetry Room: Facebook | Instagram | Season 2 Opening: Open Mic

Grace Carras: InstagramThe RCAH Center for Poetry at MSUMichigan State CUPSI Team

Masaki Takahashi: Instagram