Jesse Oliver is a Perth based writer, performance poet and motivational speaker. He made his performance debut in the Perth Australian Poetry Slam heat in 2015, and returned in 2017 to take the Western Australian title with landslide scores. From here, Jesse competed in what was described as a heart wrenching national final at the Sydney Opera House to be crowned the 2017/18 Australian Poetry Slam Champion – adult division.
Before this, Jesse’s work had been well received by platforms such as the National Young Writers Festival, the Emerging Writers / Digital Writers Festival and Spoken Word Perth. In 2017, he performed one of his slam-winning poems on the TEDxPerth red carpet. In early 2018, he launched his poetry/theatre play Star-Crossed Poetry to sold out audiences at FRINGEWORLD.
This year, Jesse will be returning to the National Young Writers Festival in his newly appointed role as Co-Director, curating artists and events for the 4-day festival. Also determined to help cultivate the performance poetry community in his home town of Perth, he has started work with ‘Spoken Word Perth’ and ‘Common Ground Returns’, a performance poetry workshop series for local CaLD communities.
Forever a dreamer, Jesse enjoys writing about alternate realities, spiritual growth, mermaids and aliens. The use of whimsical themes, teamed with a conversational style, is a deliberate trademark to explore complex subjects in a palatable form. Subjects such as his lived experiences of homelessness, mental illness, mixed-race heritage and gender transition.