Photos credits from left to right: Steve Russell, Jason Ganwich

the arts

Tacoma Poet Laureate

Stay informed! 

Join the TacomaArt Listserv to receive and post information about arts events and opportunities or join the TACelist to simply receive periodic emails from the Tacoma Arts Commission about sponsored opportunities and programming. Check out the TacomaArt Listserv & TACelist page for more information.

2013-15 Tacoma Poet Laureate

Lucas Smiraldo
Lucas Smiraldo is a Pacific Northwest writer, performing poet and twelve-time produced playwright. His performance credits include opening poet at Def Poetry Jam’s College Tour, featured poet at the National Black Pilot’s Conference, commissioned performances at the Tacoma Art Museum and the Museum of Glass, and featured poet during Seattle’s Hip Hop Awards. He has recently joined forces with master griot and kora player, Foday Musa Suso, to present a unique performance of spoken word, song, and social and political narrative.

Smiraldo received the Tacoma Arts Commission’s Arts Projects funding in 2010 and Tacoma Artists Initiative Program funding in 2008 to create two spoken word projects combining film and music. In 2010, he created an original touring work in affiliation with collaborating writers, entitled “Eleven Days in the Life of Dr. King,” which explored Dr. King’s life through 12 original spoken works put to stage with music and choreography.  Smiraldo recently completed a new touring play with co-writer April Nyquist in affiliation with the Broadway Center titled “The Bridges: A Civil Rights Journey.”

If you are interested in working with Lucas Smiraldo or having him perform for your school, organization or event, please contact him at:

Upcoming Workshops and Events:

Information will be posted when available.

Tacoma Poet Laureate Overview

The Tacoma Poet Laureate position was founded in 2008 by Urban Grace Church as a way of focusing attention on Tacoma’s literary talent by organizing and hosting public readings and workshops in local schools and community events.

Starting in 2011, the Poet Laureate position is being administered through the City of Tacoma's Arts Program. 

Past Tacoma Poet Laureates

2011-13 - Josie Emmons Turner
2010-11 - Tammy Robacker
2009-10 - Antonio Edwards, Jr.
2008-09 - William Kupinse