Louder Than A Bomb (LTAB) was founded in 2001, through the Young Chicago Authors, by Kevin Coval (YCA Artistic Director) and Anna West. LTAB is now the largest youth poetry festival in the world. It was created to give Chicago youth a platform to share their stories.
The festival has since become a "bridge" for young people from many different backgrounds to come together and find a common ground through their narratives.
LTAB was founded on a student-centered, educational philosophy geared toward young people, ages 13-19.
Building upon the impact the Omari Hardwick bluapple Poetry Network has had on area youth since launching the program in 2013, football legend Jason Taylor and his Jason Taylor Foundation are now taking bluapple to new heights by bringing the "Super Bowl of Poetry" to Broward County.
The 2014-15 school year marked the launch of Louder Than a Bomb Florida (LTABFLA), empowering and uniting South Florida's youth and community through the art of the spoken word.
Beginning in September of 2014, teachers and students from schools as far south as Homestead and as far north as Port St. Lucie, often times with the assistance of a bluapple Teaching Artist, began working, learning, creating and sharing within their classrooms, in after-school clubs and through various teen open mics throughout South Florida, developing safe spaces for individual and collective expression on their respective campuses and in their communities.
The culmination of this work manifested in an 11-day festival last April, which was highlighted by a friendly competition taking place in dynamic venues throughout Broward County. A diverse group of students, parents, administrators and community members representing nearly 40 schools participated in LTABFLA, creating authentic narratives to reimagine the self and one another while developing mutual respect and tolerance for difference.
The bluapple Poetry Network geared up for the 2015-16 Louder Than A Bomb Florida with full expectation of being markedly bigger and better.
The second-year festival ran from April 5-16, 2016 and again featured a wide array of schools from South Florida and beyond, with unique exposure to some of the finest facilities in Broward County.