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In flux: Poetry Films
Call for Entry

  • Event
  • Film
  • Poetry

Poetry Films: How Does Black Creativity Manifest? initiative:

> Call for Entry: July 26 to August 15, 2021

> Two voluntary Q&A walk-in sessions with Marie-France Barbier at the PHI Centre: August 4 and 11, 2021 between 11 AM and 3 PM

>Selection Process: August 16 to 27, 2021

> Public Announcement of Selected Applicants: September 2021

> Onboarding at the PHI Centre and Tour: September 4-5, 2021 (2 days)

> Workshops with mentors (remote and in-person): September 2021

> Production of Films: October 2021

> Presentation of Films at the PHI Centre: November 2021

For more information, please contact: [email protected]

Create a short film focusing on Black creativity, which will be followed by a public presentation.

PHI is proud to announce the projects and artists selected by the jury

Black creativity is prolific, vibrant and multidimensional. It is a constant force of reinvention and renewal. It represents a spectrum of backgrounds, disciplines, and stories. To evoke that spectrum, PHI wishes to collaborate with Black filmmakers and poets in the project entitled Poetry Films: How Does Black Creativity Manifest?

Black creatives will be called to create works that define, redefine, or interpret what Black creativity means to them and its impact in the world throughout time, from past, present and future.

Poetry Films: How Does Black Creativity Manifest? is an initiative aimed at emerging Black artists, filmmakers and content creators in Montreal. Under the creative mentorship of established professionals along with resource sharing facilitated by the PHI Centre, participants will be invited to create vertical short films using art and poetry as conduits to tell their stories.

The 2021 Selection Committee for Poetry Films: How Does Black Creativity Manifest? is composed of:

Eva Kabuya, Screenwriter and Director
Ashley Phillips, CEO & Co-Founder, Six Cinquième
Miro LaFlaga, President & Co-Founder, Six Cinquième
Marie-France Barbier, Creative Producer, PHI Centre
George Fok, Creative Director and Media Artist, PHI Studio
LOGIQ Representative


  • The team lead must be from the Black community;
  • Between 18 and 29 years of age;
  • Applicants must have demonstrated an interest, knowledge and basic skills in filmmaking and visual arts;
  • Participants must reside in the greater Montreal area;
  • Participants must be a Canadian citizen or permanent resident.
  • Remaining team members may be from various cultural communities and up to thirty-five years of age*.


On June 17, 2020, Black culture writer and strategist Melissa Kimble tweeted: “The world does not move without Black creativity.’’

This statement transcended the internet; finding itself on street billboards and t-shirts while serving to remind us of the critical role Black creativity plays in our daily lives. This omnipresent force that is constantly shifting, reinventing itself and breathing life into the soul of our culture.

Tell me, how did Black creativity manifest?

How did it fuel your past to impact your present?
How did it guide you towards your future?
How did it allow you to dream, give breath to your voice, and reflect your joy?

Tell me, how does it manifest?

As it dances and weaves through time and space.
Generous and resilient.
Redistributing itself, constantly.

Tell me, how will it manifest?

How will you define this life force that fuels our souls, nurtures our kinships and carves out our legacies?

Tell me.

Through the use of poetry, music and visuals, we invite you to share your own unique perspectives on Black creativity. You can choose to reflect on it or choose to manifest it in a way that is 100% you.

The theme for this initiative was elaborated and developed collaboratively by a collective of Montreal-based, Black creatives;

Marie-France Barbier, Creative Producer, PHI Centre
Ash Phillips & Miro LaFlaga, Co-Founders of Creative Agency Six Cinquième
Rito Joseph, Historian and Cultural Speaker
Roen Higgins, Poet and Educator

‘’As we reflected on what could be the connective thread that brought together the films, we thought about ourselves, our own experiences and our unique journeys as creatives. We thought about the people around us who inspired our creativity and continue to inspire us. We thought about the role of Black creativity in the world around us. The way it continues to flourish through adversity and societal patterns of oppression. We thought about the uniqueness of our creativity and how it binds us all.’’

Three teams will be selected, each team with a maximum of 5 team members. Among these team members, each person can assume one or more of the following roles necessary to the production of their film: Producer (line producer), Writer, Director, Cinematographer, and/or Editor. Under a structured creative mentorship program and series of workshops, the artists will produce a film from September through October 2021. The final films will be launched at an event in November 2021 and exhibited at the PHI Centre. The short films duration should be approximately 10 mins or less.


As we continue to listen to the upcoming creative class and better understand what roles cultural organizations can play in their journeys as young artists, a key theme that has emerged is the need for more representation, opportunities, and resource and skill sharing.

Poetry Films: How Does Black Creativity Manifest? aims to support emerging Black creatives, prioritize their voices through, and participate in their creative journey in a meaningful way. In order to do so, the initiative enlists a variety of approachable mentors, from cultural entrepreneurs to poets to music historians, to participate in knowledge exchange and to foster sustained relationships within the creative industry. A complete list of mentors is included at the bottom of this Call.

Selected artists participating in Poetry Films: How Does Black Creativity Manifest? will receive:

  • Personalized mentorship from industry professionals through weekly workshops and individualized meetings (with directors, curators, musicians, creative directors, and other experts in the fields of poetry and cultural entrepreneurship);
  • Selected access to PHI shooting equipment (a phone, toolkit of mixing equipment, based on the needs of the artists and decided at the discretion of the PHI team);
  • Access to PHI sound studio and sound engineer (8 hours per team);
  • $1,000 CAD per individual artist as an artist fee and to cover additional or specific production costs outside of those provided by PHI ($250 CAD per week to a maximum of $1,000 CAD per artist);
  • Promotional support of the artist and the final presentation across PHI networks;
  • Public screening of the final films, including installation support, at the PHI Centre in November 2021.


Web Mentor Eva Kabuya V2

EVA KABUYA (Directing and Screenwriting Mentor)

Eva Kabuya is completing her BFA in Communication and Film at Concordia University and is currently pursuing her MFA in Film at New York University (NYU) School of Fine Arts. In 2017, her short film, POUSSIERE, was presented at the 13th edition of the Montreal Black Film Festival, and then in February 2018 as part of the Tout Simplement Noir program, for the 36th edition of Rendez-vous Québec Cinéma. Kabuya’s web series AMOURS D'OCCASION (ICI was selected at CANNESERIES in the Short Series competition and won the Prix Gémeaux de la relève 2020 in addition to several awards at international festivals including the NYC WebFest for Best Foreign Language Series.
Web Mentor Roen Higgins V2

ROEN HIGGINS (Poetry Mentor)

Roen Higgins is an award-winning Spoken Word Poet, Special Care Counsellor and Impact Coach who is regularly featured on different media platforms for her passion and expertise. Higgins’ mission is to engage, educate and elevate others into finding their unique gifts and life skills which she believes is the foundation of well-being. Her focus is helping youth and young adults emerge and women shift with creative and cultural literacy, mental health, social change, and community well-being.

Web Mentor Rito Joseph v2 1

RITO JOSEPH (Cultural Mentor)

Rito Joseph is a community speaker on cultural identity and the founder of Black Montreal Experiences. A self-taught speaker and guide, he strives to provide people with enjoyable ways to learn about African-descendant communities and the history of Black Montrealers. Joseph has presented in Ghana, New York and throughout Montreal.
Web Mentor Miryam Charles V2

MIRYAM CHARLES (Technical Skills & Grants Mentor)

Miryam Charles is a film director and director of photography living in Montreal. She has directed several short films and has been the director of photography for several short and feature films. Her films have been presented in various festivals in Quebec and internationally. Charles’ is currently working on various projects: a feature documentary film, Cette maison (Talents en vue, SODEC, Fonds MELS) and a short fiction film, Au crépuscule (SODEC créateurs émergents). She is also in development for a drama series X (Banff/Netflix Diversity of Voices + Trio Orange) as well as a feature film Le marabout (La forge Québec cinéma/Netflix and Voyelles Films).
Web Mentor Vladimir Delva V2 2

VLADIMIR DELVA aka Kapois Lamort (Music Mentor)

Vladimir Delva is a trained historian, emcee and hip-hop musicologist. He has a Bachelor's degree in history from the University of Quebec in Montreal (UQÀM) and numerous credentials in pedagogy, teaching and adult education. Delva is also the author of the first published monograph on the history of the Quebec hip-hop scene, Les Bosses du Québec: R.A.P du Fleur de Lysée (2014).
Web Mentor Ash Miro v2

MIRO LAFLAGA & ASH PHILLIPS, Six Cinquième (Cultural Entrepreneurship Mentors)

Based in Montreal, award winning creative agency Six Cinquième is a home for mavericks constantly looking to uncover the next frontier; a launchpad for trailblazers ready to make their mark. We empower those who are propelled by possibility; those who see the future as a blank canvas, who don’t just embrace change but seek it.

Six Cinquième gives you the tools to commit wholeheartedly to your vision, because we know that fear is the enemy of progress and that for true innovators, the unknown is the most exciting opportunity there is.

Web Mentor George Fok v2

GEORGE FOK (Media Art and Creative Direction Mentor)

George Fok (born in Hong Kong) is a media artist and creative synthesist with transdisciplinary practice. Based in Montreal, his oeuvre explores the intersection of immersive experience, speculative fiction and aesthetic consciousness, with the objective of re-enchanting the homogenized and rambunctious world of modernity. Fok’s work has appeared in immersive shows, documentary and Hollywood films, and art institutions such as Musée d'art contemporain de Montréal, GL Strand & Nikolaj Kunsthal in Copenhagen, and The Jewish Museum of New York.

As a Creative Director at PHI STUDIO, and as a firm believer in redefining creativity through collaborations, Fok frequently works in conjunction with other emerging and established talents such as choreographers, musicians, and fashion designers.


Poetry in film is having a moment. From Joseph Khalil to Arthur Jafa, Flying Lotus to Kanye West, poetry film fuses spoken word, visual images, and sound to create multi-dimensional works that are ripe for interpretation. Applicants are encouraged to be inspired by this tradition and make it their own.

Vertical filmmaking is another key parameter of this project and a catalyst to inspire storytelling. The format of 9:16, a device-friendly vertical portrait format, will create a new set of challenges and encourage a distinct point-of-view. Whether you have formal or informal training, we encourage you to embrace this format and to think outside the box with a wholly contemporary and game-changing approach. The short films duration should be approximately 10 mins or less.


  • Call for Entry: July 26 to August 15, 2021
  • Q&A walk-in sessions with Marie-France Barbier at the PHI Centre: August 4 and 11, 2021 between 11 AM and 3 PM
  • Selection Process: August 16 to 27, 2021
  • Public Announcement of Selected Applicants: September 2021
  • Onboarding at the PHI Centre and Tour: September 4-5, 2021 (2 days)
  • Workshops with mentors (remote and in-person): September 2021
  • Production of Films: October 2021
  • Presentation of Films at the PHI Centre: November 2021


Health and Safety: COVID-19

Throughout the on-site onboarding and public presentation period, the PHI Team will carefully follow the health protocols recommended by Quebec Public Health authorities to ensure the safety of all participants and support staff.


Poetry Films: How Does Black Creativity Manifest? is conceived and produced by PHI with concept and creative direction by: PHI, Six Cinquième, Roen Higgins and Rito Josef. This project could not have been made possible without the important contributions of nènè myriam konaté and Lucas LaRochelle. Thank you for continuously sharing your knowledge, interpellations and beautiful souls with us.


Created and produced by PHI
Concept: George Fok & Marie-France Barbier
Creative Direction, Strategy and Creative Consultants : Six Cinquième
Created in collaboration with: Rito Joseph, Roen Higgins, Ash Phillips and Miro LaFlaga
Special acknowledgements: nènè myriam konaté & Lucas LaRochelle

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