Emerging poet Kopanong Tito, was crowned the first ever winner of the inaugural Annual BTC Poetry Festival held at Thapong Visual Arts Centre last Friday.
Tito, who was in his best element in the competition, beat Resego Radinoga and Keabetswe Lemogang who came second and third respectively.
Fifteen contestants who were divided into three groups entered the competition.
The winner from each group was decided by votes from the audience.
The person with the most votes in each group had to battle it out in the finals and Tito emerged the crowd favourite. The audience contributed 70% of the overall result while the judges only contributed 15%.
One of the judges came on stage to reveal what they were really looking for.
“There was a lot of talent tonight, but there is room for growth and improvement. We looked at the posture of a poet, the attire and the way the poet recited and articulated themselves. We wanted the words to come out clearly so that the message can be understood,” the judge revealed.
Coming up with their results, she said Tito and another renowned poet Edwin Moroka were the standing poets on the day. She said overall the poet they regarded as the best and knowledgeable was Moroka. Despite the judges’ chosen best, Moroka could not make it to the podium finish because not enough votes from the crowd came his way.
The winner, Tito, was the crowd favourite with his charisma and use of words. He was not just a poet on stage but he was an entertainer and the way he interacted with his ululating lady on stage won everyone’s hearts. Shosho as he called her was also the secret weapon to Tito’s success.
Setswana poets mostly dominated the poetry festival. For his effort, Tito won a record deal.