Spoken word is an easy scene to get into, but a hard one to survive in. Around the country there are thousands of open mics. To get on stage one does not have to achieve a high cultural standing, in order to perform one must simply sign up. From these open mics, performers are able to make more and more connections with the art world, this forms stronger bonds and a close knit community. Artists do not make any money for open mics, so many choose to perform in tournaments. Local tournaments such as the one that voices merging hosted have a cash prize of around one hundred dollars. If one does well in local tournaments, they are then able to move up the ladder to larger and larger tournaments with larger prizes. This year’s International Spoken Word Competition is being held in Chicago. Two members from Voices Merging will be competing in it this summer.
As mentioned above this art world is not too large so they are relatively close. Voices merging held a poetry slam and was able to get three very prominent artists in the Minneapolis spoken word community to be the judges. Many of the artists go from one open mic to the next, thus creating more and more bonds which raises their social status in the community.