Paul Vermeersch at the podium at Battle of the Bards

The 10th Annual Battle of the Bards

Congratulations to Winner Paul Vermeersch!

Toronto’s Paul Vermeersch has been selected as winner of the 10th Annual Battle of the Bards poetry competition, presented in partnership with NOW Magazine. On March 28, 2018 poets read their work on stage in friendly rivalry at Harbourfront Centre as part of this popular annual event.

Vermeersch was chosen as winner following his charismatic reading from his latest book Don't Let It End Like This Tell Them I Said Something (ECW Press, 2014). The runners up are Angela Hibbs of Peterborough, Margo LaPierre of Toronto, Karen Mulhallen of Toronto, and Polish-Canadian writer Caroline Szpak, who lives in Toronto. Honourary mention goes to French contemporary poet Stéphane Bouqet.

The winner was selected by a jury composed of Geoffrey E. Taylor (the Festival’s Director), Stuart Ross (winner of the 9th Annual Battle of the Bards), and Zviko Mhakayakora (the Festival’s Executive Assistant, Programming). The event was hosted by Susan G. Cole, Senior Entertainment editor, NOW Magazine.

As the winner, Vermeersch receives an invitation to read at the 39th edition of the Toronto International Festival of Authors, taking place October 18-28, 2018 in Toronto, as well as complimentary advertising for his book in NOW Magazine.

Stéphane Bouquet's participation in this event was made possible with the support of the Cultural Services of the Embassy of France in Canada.

About the Battle of the Bards

Presented by the Toronto International Festival of Authors, the Battle of the Bards is an annual juried poetry competition that has showcased emerging and established poets since 2008. The body of work presented represents a broad range of voices, genres and themes. The event is an annual fan favourite, and remains one of Toronto’s most popular activities on the poetry calendar. This year marks the event’s 10th anniversary.

In February, the Toronto International Festival of Authors and NOW Magazine invited submissions for the 10th annual Battle of the Bards from poets with collections published within the past five years, and currently in print with a trade publisher. Of the eligible submissions, 20 poets were selected by random draw to take part in the competition. On March 28, 2018 the poets each read a three-minute selection of their work in front of a live audience and jury.

Congratulations to all the 2018 Finalists