100 Beautiful POC – Day 33

Denice Frohman

[33] Denice FrohmanDenice Frohman is an award-winning poet, educator, and lyricist, whose work explores the intersections of race, gender, sexuality, and the ‘in-betweeness’ that exists in all of us.” Originally from New York, Frohman has traversed the U.S., speaking and performing at “hundreds of colleges, K-12 schools, community spaces, and conferences…from TedxPhilly to the Youth Study Detention Center.As a queer, multi-cultural, latina woman, her work focuses on social justice, identity, celebrating difference, and loving the parts of ourselves that do not fit neatly into dominant social categories.”

She is the former program director of the Philadelphia Youth Poetry Movement (PYPM), a creative outlet for teens in the area to express themselves and create positive change for themselves and others in their communities. Frohman whole-heartedly believes that social investment in young people is necessary to cultivate future leaders, noting that “If we don’t listen to them, we won’t know what they’re lacking, and what they need from us,” in order to prosper. Frohman is also the 2013 Women of the World Poetry Slam Champion, the 2013 Hispanic Choice Award recipient for “Creative Artist of the Year,” the 2013 Southern Fried Poetry Slam Champion, a recipient of the 2012 Leeway Transformation Award, a 2014 CantoMundo Fellow, and a grant recipient of the 2014 National Association of Latino Arts & Cultures Fund for the Arts.

In 2013, Frohman paired up with 2012 and 2014 Women of the World Champion, Dominique Christina, to form the poetry duo Sister Outsider Poetry. Together they continue to tour across the country, exploring through their poetry issues like police brutality, resistance movements, rape culture and gender-based violence, and stereotypes and bias, among many other issues. They have already been invited to perform and teach workshops at more than 90 universities, schools, and conferences, including Dartmouth College, the University of Michigan, the College Union of Poetry Slam Invitational (CUPSI), and even Boston University where I had the pleasure of seeing her perform live in 2015.

On her own, Frohman has also pursued songwriting as a sort of secret passion, producing her debut album Feels Like Home, which blends poetry, music, and song, and is available now. For a taste of her work, you can check out a couple of her spoken word poems “Accents” and “Dear Straight People.”

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