Poet, mc, sound artist and social activist Richard Quaz Roodt has been at the forefront of the Johannesburg poetry scene for years as a performer, host, facilitator and organiser. He facilitates a poetry and creative writing class at the University of Johannesburg and has written and directed numerous student plays in the last five years.
His poetry has been published and translated in various anthologies, journals, magazines and newspapers. In 2009, he published The Orange Book Vol.2, a follow-up to his 2005 chapbook with the same title. Quaz’s poem Last Will was used for a dance production for the Dayton Contemporary Dance Company (Ohio, USA). His poetry has also appeared on taxis in the Johannesburg CBD as part of the 2013 Taxi Poetry Project. In 2014, Quaz and visual artist Jabulani Tshuma initiated the ‘Made You Read’ project that looks at placing poems in everyday spaces where they are not expected.
Quaz has facilitated workshops for JWTC, Unity Design, The African Writers’ Conference, Centre for the Study of Violence and Reconciliation (CSVR), Drama for Life and the Department of Arts and Culture. In 2012, he co-hosted a section of the South African Literary Awards in Bloemfontein. He has released four hip hop/poetry projects entitled The Immaculate Thoughts of Za’uQ (2006), The Chocolate Brown Guy Mixtape (2008), Your Slice of Cake Ep 2010 and The Lost Pieces of Za’uQ 2012. Quaz is also a founding member of the iconic Johannesburg collective Likwid Tongue, renowned for their spontaneous and humorous charity shows.