Asia Samson never thought that spoken word poetry would be his calling, but here he is, a spoken word artist fortunate enough to turn his love of poetry into a lucrative career.
The Asia Project, which features acoustic music poetry, will be coming to the University of Findlay March 23 as part of the Music Bach’s concert series. The free, public concert will take place in the Alumni Memorial Union’s atrium from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. as part of the Music Bach’s Concert Series.
Asia’s gripping words have never been less than an honest and genuine testimonial to his life. The Florida native’s uncanny ability to combine humor and inspiration while provoking thought and self-reflection has won audiences all over. Ranging from crowds as small as three to crowds as big as 3,000, Asia delivers all of himself each time, making sure to never skim on what may have testified as one of the best shows the audience members has ever seen.
Asia’s art is partly influenced by a life-altering diagnosis of testicular cancer in 2006 that temporarily put his poetry career at a standstill. While recuperating from surgery, he made a vow that if he survived, he would no longer take his life for granted.
Since beating cancer, Asia has been featured on Russell Simmons’ “HBO Def Poetry,” was named APCA Performer of the Year, and the APCA College Spoken Word Artist of the Year for the third year in a row by the Association of the Promotion of Campus Activities. He has also taken first place at the 2008 Southern Fried Poetry Slam Championships and has had the privilege to perform with great musical artists such as Mos Def, Jill Scott, DMX, and Dead Prez, and currently hosts Mello Mondays, an open mic venue.
Now, Asia tours with his brother-in-law, Jollan Aurelio, and together they are The Asia Project. Combining Asia’s words with Jollan’s self-taught guitar talents, they blend poetry into a show that is inspirational and moving. They perform at an average 150 colleges a year, delivering about 500 performances total.
The Asia Project never stops elevating itself and taking its work to the next level. Here are some of the projects in production that are set to release by the end of the year:
- “As I Am” is a one-man theater production that takes its audience through Asia’s life. Sometimes comical, but also inspirational and moving, it’s a vivid story of a young man coming to grips with life’s trials and tribulations as he deals with his parent’s divorce, multiple relationships, finding a meaningful career and battling cancer.
- “3000 or 3,” a documentary, will take you on the road with The Asia Project as they travel to hundreds of college’s throughout the country. This film will feature the life of touring artists trying to make the road their home, while doing the work they love. It will also include various performances to give the audience an unbiased look at how it’s really like to be a touring act and why it’s not as glamorous as people may think.
- “Awakening” is a novel in progress that follows the death of Asia’s sister. The book will take readers into the lives of his family during the week of his sister’s surgery, and untimely death. In it, he bears to witness to the power of a family coming together in the midst of a crisis.
Music Bach’s Concert Series is sponsored and hosted by Student Activities Board, “your source for diverse edutainment.” For additional information, call 419-434-4606.