Support Local Artists

Support Your Local Poet

Elise PallagiNews

My poetry and performance art comes from my experience and frustrations growing up in rural Saskatchewan and eventually coming out as a transgender woman. I moved to Saskatoon in my mid-twenties to attend university and pursue transition. This process has been slow and I initially faced many barriers accessing care and later on had difficulty finding reliable employment. I had never planned on becoming a poet but back in 2016, I wrote two poems about the depression and harassment that I faced by virtue of being transgender and participated in a queer poetry slam. Two years later, I have managed to have succeeded in becoming one of the most well-known poets in the Saskatchewan spoken word community and have performed at numerous events throughout Saskatchewan, including Tonight It’s Poetry, Regina’s Word Up, Saskatoon Pride Festival, Ness Creek Music Festival, Alt Alt DIY Fest, LUGO, and the Canadian Festival of Spoken Word.

Spoken word poetry may be my primary artistic practice, but there is more to it as I draw inspiration from multiple genres of theatre and performance art to transform poetry into a foundation for more complex performance pieces. I take inspiration from sources as diverse as my love of roller derby (by performing poetry while roller skating in front of, around, and through the audience) and my background in burlesque (by combining poetry and striptease). I found that combining multiple forms of performance art elicited an even more positive response from audiences and has inspired me to continue developing new and more complex work. I live to create artwork that inspires audiences to think about the human side of bullying, harassment, homophobia, transphobia and inspires them to challenge it.

It is my belief that art is rooted in activism and a part of my activism in practice is to do my part to ensure proper representation for transgender people in Saskatchewan and across Canada. I hope to inspire and mentor other aspiring transgender, queer and non-binary poets and performers to take the stage and use the medium of art to advance the cause of human rights for all of us.

I am incredibly thankful for the support I have received over the last two years and I hope to continue to queer the world of performance art in this province and across Canada for years to come.

If you would like to support the continuation of my artwork and community building practice, please purchase my poetry chapbooks, commission a custom piece of writing, become a patron of mine on Patreon, or make a donation with PayPal. Thank you!