The internationally renowned Literary Death Match returns to Vancouver on Friday, with another Battle of the Books at Fox Cabaret.
Hosted and created by Adrian Todd Zuniga, Literary Death Match features a mix of four established and emerging authors performing for a live audience and a panel of three judges. After a pair of readings, the judges give feedback and commentary, focusing on literary merit, performance and intangibles.
“Back in 2006, we asked the question: how can we make readings fun? Like, foolproof and bristling with delight,” said Zuniga. “We landed on a few key things: limit the reading time (we started at 10 minutes per reader, but we’re now at seven minutes), litter the show with comedy that’s organic (my literary-infused opening monologue; judges that can crack sweetly-wise in response to the work), and end it with an absurd, vaguely literary game that leaves the crowd in a mildly-confused state of absolute wow.”
Since Literary Death Match debuted in New York City, it has expanded to 60 cities worldwide, including London, Hong Kong, and Paris. The upcoming Vancouver showcase will feature performances by Aaron Chapman, Lucia Misch, Jayson McDonald, and Susin Nielsen. The judges include Rachel Hartman, Sara Bynoe, and Graham Clark.
“I love that every single show we do is this moment in time — the show we do at Fox Cabaret on November 4th will never happen again,” said Zuniga. “If you’re not there, you miss this spectacular miracle of weirdness and levity and joy.”
Literary Death Match performance judge Sara Bynoe echoes Zuniga’s excitement.
“I have seen this show in four different countries and every time it’s different,” said Bynoe. “I have enjoyed this show from the first time I saw it in 2008 in London, England.”
Where: Fox Cabaret – 2321 Main Street, Vancouver
When: Friday, November 4 at 8 pm
Tickets: On Eventbrite, $12 in advance, $15 at the door