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The Art Bar is held at the fabulous
Free Times Cafe,
320 College Street,
(College/Spadina)

$5 at the door

Click here to visit their website -

Free Times



Our New Schedule - - - - and Win cash on the Open Mic



26-Mar-19 , 8:00 pm - 10:30 pm

Your Host: Rosa Arlotto

Our Feature Readers:

Valentino Assenza
Valentino Assenza poet & spoken word artist, past board member of Art Bar Poetry Series, founding member of The Toronto Poetry Project, co-host & co-producer of Howl radio show

Dominik Parisien
Dominik Parisien's work has appeared in The Fiddlehead, Quill & Quire, Atticus Review, and various other magazines and anthologies. He is the author of the chapbook "We, Old Young Ones” (Frog Hollow Press, 2019). He is also the co-editor, with Navah Wolfe, of The Starlit Wood: New Fairy, which won the Shirley Jackson Award, and Disabled People Destroy Science Fiction, with Elsa Sjunneson-Henry. Dominik is a disabled, bisexual, French Canada. He lives in Toronto.

Michael McNeil
"Michael McNeil is a poet and spoken word artist. He writes about mental health issues to foster understanding and acceptance to feelings and emotions that many struggle with silently. "

02-Apr-19 , 8:00 pm - 10:30 pm

Your Host: 00-Jan-00

Our Feature Readers:

Alvin Wong and Stanford Cheung
"Alvin Wong is the senior editor of Inspiritus Press. He has poems published in Half a Grapefruit Magazine and Temz Review along with a short story in Ricepaper magazine. He co-authoured a chapbook with Stanford Cheung, We Could be Anything from Crevasse Press in Ibaraki, Japan. Stanford Cheung is the author of Structures from the Still, a book of poems released by Akinoga Press last summer. Among his chapbooks published include Any Seam or Needlework (The Operating System, 2016), Kite Extension (words(on)pages, 2017), and Comfort of Malice (Inspiritus Press, 2018). Born in Scarborough, he freelances as a musician and is currently based in Montreal."

Hana Shafi
Hana Shafi is a writer and artist who illustrates under the name Frizz Kid. Both her visual art and writing frequently explore themes such as feminism, body politics, racism, and pop culture with an affinity to horror. A graduate of Ryerson University’s Journalism Program, she has published articles in publications such as The Walrus, Hazlitt, This Magazine, Torontoist, Huffington Post, and has been featured on Buzzfeed India, Buzzfeed Canada, CBC, Flare Magazine, Mashable, and Shameless, Known on Instagram for her weekly affirmation series, she is also the recipient of the Women Who Inspire Award, from the Canadian Council for Muslim Women.Her first book, It Begins With The Body was recently selected by CBC books as one of the best poetry books of 2018.

Emilio Puerta
Emilio D. Puerta is a Toronto-based writer who has been striving for a name in the poetic backlots for over a decade, and still scrambling towards the light. Mentored by the best, he has won the hearts of the public, but oddly not the publishers, but is regardless willing to share all he has learned with anyone who's willing to listen. He can be found in the worldwide online community known as Writer's Café, where he has made a name for himself as a mentor to the world's most illustrious shadows. In August of 2018, he selfed his debut collection, Abre la Puerta, and is in the midst of compiling a second for whoever is interested.

09-Apr-19 , 8:00 pm - 10:30 pm

Your Host: 00-Jan-00

Our Feature Readers:

Susan McMaster
Susan McMaster’s new book Haunt investigates “the world entire, with all its mystery, heartbreak, and magic” (Carolyn Smart) in poetry that speaks to a wide range of readers with “rhythm and verve” (Jan Conn). Her publications include some 30 books, magazines, anthologies, and wordmusic recordings with First Draft, SugarBeat, and Geode Music & Poetry. She’s a past president of the League of Canadian Poets. As part of her reading at Art Bar, she and a mystery collaborator will première several new works.

Ariane Blackman
I have been writing poetry for most of my life - but having a job in the corporate world meant the poetry was for myself rather than for the outside world. However, I enjoyed putting together my book of poems with the help of Luciano Iacobelli, Alan Briesmaster and Bruce Hunter and I hope to put other books together in the near future.

Jenna Lyn Albert
Jenna Lyn Albert is a poet, cat enthusiast, and proud acadienne living in Fredericton, New Brunswick. A recent graduate of the University of New Brunswick’s Creative Writing program, her poetry has appeared in many Canadian literary magazines such as The Malahat Review, The Puritan, Riddle Fence, and The Temz Review. Albert is a member of The Fiddlehead’s editorial board and a first reader for Goose Lane Editions’ Icehouse poetry imprint. Her debut collection of poetry, Bec & Call, was published with Nightwood Editions in September 2018. She is currently serving a two-year term as the City of Fredericton’s Poet Laureate (2019-2020).

16-Apr-19 , 8:00 pm - 10:30 pm

Your Host: 00-Jan-00

Our Feature Readers:

Dorothy Sjoholm
Dorothy Sjöholm is the author of a self-published collection of poems and stories called Holding the Mirror and a poetry chapbook, Wait for the Final Explosion. Her works have appeared in journals and anthologies in Canada, England and U.S.A., including The Antigonish Review, The Adirondack Review, Airforce, Cede, lichen, Jones Ave, and Outlook Springs. In 2015 she completed an MFA in Creative Writing at UBC where she studied under Susan Musgrave and Gary Geddes. Since then she has been facilitating poetry readings and leading weekly study and workshopping sessions in her home in Barrie.

Anda Zeng
Anda’s art is word, song, and the symbolic cutting of her dark hair. She likes her words sharp, her songs dreamy, her hair long, and her bios short. Her first EP will be released this summer. She also plays in the all-female band/angelic lovefest Tiger Bomb.

pj johnson
On Canada Day July 1st 1994 pj johnson the daughter of a Yukon trapper was formally invested and given the title Poet Laureate of the Yukon during a ceremony in Whitehorse and became the first officially-invested poet laureate in Canada. Her latest book “it’s howlin’ time!” is a veritable cornucopia of creative works composed in a variety of styles and genres chronicling the life and times of a northern Canadian poet laureate. Also known as The Yukon Raven Lady, ms. johnson is a passionate animal advocate currently campaigning to protect northern sled dogs. On Canada Day July 1st 2019 she will celebrate her 25th anniversary as Poet Laureate of the Yukon. She is Canada's longest serving Poet Laureate in Canada.

23-Apr-19 , 8:00 pm - 10:30 pm

Your Host: John Oughton

Our Feature Readers:

Jade Wallace
Jade Wallace is a writer from the Niagara Fruit Belt currently working in law and trying to be a good Draft Reading Series collective member in Toronto, Ontario. Jade’s short fiction, poetry, and essays have been published in Canada, India, the U.S., the U.K., Ireland, Sweden, and New Zealand, including in Studies in Social Justice, The Dalhousie Review, The Nashwaak Review, Feathertale, A New Ulster, Acumen, The Chaffey Review, The Town Crier, Pac’n Heat: A Noir Homage To Ms. Pac-Man from AGP Books, Breakfast in a Day from Death Cookie Soup, as well as in chapbooks from Grey Borders Books. Rituals of Parsing (2018), a collection of poems, is available now from Anstruther Press. Jade plays ukulele in The Leafy Greens, a band that has been incorrectly described as “psychedelic stoner metal.”

Susan Glickman
Susan Glickman is a lapsed academic who teaches creative writing and works as a freelance editor, primarily of academic books. Yes, she loves punctuation. For the last three years she has also been a full-time art student at Central Technical School in Toronto, which gave her the confidence she needed to illustrate her last novel, The Discovery of Flight. Her hobbies are gardening, walking the dog, and making soup.

D.M. Marchand-Lafortune
DM Marchand-Lafortune is an actor, advocate, educator, photographer, poet, singer-songwriter, actor, videographer and visual artist. She is a smart, powerful woman who can command any stage. She was born to a single Cree–Métis mother and Jewish father in downtown Toronto in 1950s. Her paternal grandparents, holocaust survivor, refused to accept the relationship. When she was born her mother and her were homeless. As an orphan she has lived Fanon’s claim: “I must understand everything because I belong nowhere.” This understanding informs all her work and has meant she has a finely tuned sense of communication for inclusion. She is working on her first book of poetry – Orphans and The Other Little Things That Matter.

30-Apr-19 , 8:00 pm - 10:30 pm

Your Host: Asian-Canadian Heritage Month Kick Off hosted by Puneet Dutt

Our Feature Readers:

Phoebe Wang
PHOEBE WANG is a writer and educator based in Toronto, Canada and a first-generation Chinese-Canadian. Her work has recently appeared in BRICK Magazine, the Copenhagen-based Sindroms Magazine and in the REFUSE: Canlit in Ruins anthology. She is the author of two chapbooks and her debut collection of poetry, Admission Requirements (McClelland and Stewart, 2017) was shortlisted for the Gerald Lambert Memorial Award, the Pat Lowther Memorial Award, and nominated for the Trillium Book Award. Her work has been included in The Unpublished City, shortlisted for a Toronto Book Award, and she co-edited The Unpublished City: Volume II, The Lived City. Currently she works with the organization Poetry In Voice and as a Writing and Learning Consultant for ELL students at OCADU. More of her work can be found at www.alittleprint.com.

Manahil Bandukwala
Manahil Bandukwala is a poet and artist. She is the author of two chapbooks, Paper Doll (Anstruther Press, 2019) and Pipe Rose (battleaxe press, 2018). Her literary and visual work has appeared in numerous publications, including the Puritan, Room, Existere, Coven Editions, and others. She was the 2019 winner of Room magazine's Emerging Writer Award, and was a Tree Reading Series' Hot Ottawa Voice for 2018. See her work on her website, http://manahils.com.

Chuqiao (Teresa) Yang
Chuqiao (Teresa) Yang was born in Beijing, China and currently resides in Toronto. She has a Bachelor of Social Sciences from the University of Ottawa and a Juris Doctor from the University of Windsor. Her writing has appeared in The Unpublished City, 30 under 30: an anthology of Canadian millennial poets, The Puritan, Ricepaper, Arc, Prism, Filling Station, Grain, CV2, Room, and on CBC. In 2011, she was the recipient of two Western Magazine Awards for a non-fiction piece, Beijing Notes. In 2015, she was a finalist for the Bronwen Wallace Award for Emerging Writers. Her chapbook, Reunions in the Year of the Sheep, published by Baseline Press, won the 2018 bpNichol Chapbook Award. Follow her on Twitter @chuqiaoyang.




The Art Bar Poetry Series is recognized as the longest running
poetry-only reading series in Canada - 25 Years!


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