Performance venues that define the Bengaluru poetry scene


 Good poetry, good weather, good food. What else do you need?

Performance venues for poetry and more in Bengaluru:

The time has come for you to channel your inner Bard. A well-crafted poem stands on its own, like a ticking bomb packed densely with words that have lives of their own; plucking at the heartstrings and making music from the brimming inner volcano of passion. On Talk Like Shakespeare Day, April 23, wash away your blues with a dose of hearty poetry and Shakespeare. This is the chance for thou to lob insults like ‘thou poisonous bunch-back’d toad’ or ‘qualling dog-hearted miscreant’ on foes and fiends of old. Waste not thine advantage as thou aren’t getting this occasion yet again anytime soon. Ever wondered what could change if we all spoke the way Shakespeare wrote? Might we fall in love more intensely and seek revenge more swiftly? Today is the day you find out.

Bengaluru has a reputation of a mature audience and there are plenty of places where you can perform or catch an Open Mic to go with your beer and some good food. Here’s a few places around the city where you can explore what Open Mic in Bangalore has to offer.

Open Mic or live shows are where audience members perform at the microphone. Usually, the performers sign up a day in advance as per the time slot with the host or master of ceremonies. Open Mic shows are generally focused on performance arts like poetry and the spoken word, comedy and music.

Atta Galatta, Koramangala

Atta Galatta is a haven for stage plays, book readings, discussions, seminars and workshops making it every art lover’s paradise. What’s most loved about this spectacular place is the spoken word poetry night and the ambiance that will definitely take you on a nostalgic trip. You could catch up on your poetry as this place caters to every mood.


Urban solace, Ulsoor

Urban Solace can be called the cradle of Bengaluru poetry, with teenage poets exercising their poetic rights to the hilt. The cafe has had 200 sessions of weekly poetry reading, with performance poetry gradually taking over. And although it is mostly youngsters performing, there is no age bar for the audience. Head here to romance the poetry as it serenades you with rhyme and rhythm.

Take 5, Indiranagar

Take 5 is one of the few places that allow people to just sit back and enjoy a day of comedy, poetry or music. Weekends are the best to stop by – for swooners and sighers who can’t find the words to describe the feelings that love inspires, these poets have the answer. Brevity and impact are what poetry is all about, and Take 5 is a place to meet such gems!


Now that you’ve got your places sorted, how about thinking of how to start aping the Bard himself? Fear thee not! And look no further. Listed especially for you are a handy set of guidelines for Talk Like Shakespeare day:

  1. Instead of you, say thou or thee (and instead of y’all, say ye).
  2. Rhymed couplets are all the rage.
  3. Men are Sirrah, ladies are Mistress, and your friends are all called Cousin.
  4. Instead of cursing, try calling your tormenters jackanapes or canker-blossoms orpoisonous bunch-back’d toads.
  5. Don’t waste time saying “it,” just use the letter “t” (’tis, t’will, I’ll do’t).
  6. Verse for lovers, prose for ruffians, songs for clowns.
  7. When in doubt, add the letters “eth” to the end of verbs (he runneth, he trippeth, hefalleth).
  8. To add weight to your opinions, try starting them with methinks, mayhaps, in sooth orwherefore.
  9. When wooing ladies: try comparing her to a summer’s day. If that fails, say “Get thee to a nunnery!”
  10. When wooing lads: try dressing up like a man. If that fails, throw him in the Tower, banish his friends and claim the throne!

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