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9 Boston-area open mics to show off your talent

A pre-pandemic poetry open mic at the Cantab Lounge.Photo by Rich Beaubien, courtesy of Dawn Gabriel

A lot of Bostonians have spent these last few virtual years working on a skill. Maybe you’ve become a creative spoken-word poet or a fiery blues guitar player, but no matter what, you deserve an audience for your dedication. Boston’s open mic circuit is made up of wonderful, creative, welcoming people, and it’s a great way of presenting yourself to the world. No matter your form of expression, here are nine Boston-area open mics you can attend.


CLUB PASSIM A nonprofit since 1994, Passim has spent the past few decades serving the Cambridge music scene through its music school, artist grants, and of course, its regular open mic nights. Stars-in-the-making can join Club Passim virtually or in person for up to 10 minutes in the spotlight; sign-ups are available on their website but slots are first come, first served. While this open mic is primarily music, performers can present comedy, poetry, or even tell a compelling story. Mondays, 7-9 p.m., free for Passim members and virtual open mics, $8 for in-person open mics, in person and virtual, 47 Palmer St, Cambridge. passim.org

THE PORCH SOUTHERN FARE & JUKE JOINT This weekly Sunday session is more of an open jam than an open mic, but it’s still a wonderful opportunity to display your blues chops. Performers are given a chance to sit in on three songs, with equipment like drums, bass amps, guitar amps, and mics provided. Sundays, 1-4 p.m., free, 175 Rivers Edge Drive, Medford. eventbrite.com


A regular Thursday night at the Bebop. Rock Choi (left), with Josh Riley. Together they are Rock N’ Riley. Photo by Noreen Maloney, courtesy of the Bebop

THE BEBOP Founded in 2017 by the team behind the Burren in Davis Square, the Bebop offers a weekly, free open mic that transforms into an open jam at 11:30 p.m. Expect to play two songs with up to 15 minutes of total stage time, and you could be considered for future gigs at either bar. Thursdays, 8-11:30 p.m., free, 1116 Boylston St. signupgenius.com



TAVERN AT THE END OF THE WORLD Take a trip to Charlestown for a well-poured Guinness, and a chance to get the crowd roaring with your comedy prowess. At the time of reporting, the open mic details aren’t listed on their website, but a quick call to the bar will get you everything you need to know. Wednesdays, 8 p.m., free, 108 Cambridge St. tavernattheendoftheworld.com

JACQUE’S CABARET Whether it’s through drag shows, karaoke, or birthday parties, Jacque’s Cabaret always shows its patrons a good time. Spend your Sunday at their weekly open mic, hosted by local comedian Mitzzy Anne Picardo, who first performed at this very event. Be sure to show up 30 minutes early for sign-ups. Sundays, 7 p.m., $5, 79 Broadway. jacques-cabaret.com


THE CANTAB LOUNGE This Central Square mainstay housed the Boston Poetry Slam from 1992 until the slam’s hiatus from in-person events in 2020. A few months ago, poet Dawn Gabriel brought poetry back to the Cantab Lounge with weekly Wednesday open mics, which are followed by a poetry slam with a featured poet each week. Wednesdays, 8 p.m., $3, 738 Massachusetts Ave., Cambridge. thecantablounge.com

TRIDENT BOOKSELLERS & CAFE In addition to their trivia, speed dating, and book clubs, Back Bay’s Trident hosts a weekly poetry open mic. Come to Back Bay for your own three minutes in the spotlight, and be sure to show up 30 minutes early for sign-ups. Sundays, 7-9 p.m., free, 338 Newbury St. tridentbookscafe.com


Michelle La Poetica (left), performing at an open mic at the Jungle.Photo by Martin Lightfoot, courtesy of the Jungle


THE JUNGLE Founded in 2019, the Jungle is one of the newest additions to the Somerville music scene. Don’t miss this variety open mic, with a different theme each week. Don’t worry, even if you’re there on comedy night you can still perform your haunting, acoustic rendition of Mitski’s “Class of 2013.” Be sure to stick around for karaoke afterward. Wednesdays, 7-10 p.m., free, 6 Sanborn Court, Somerville. thejunglemusicclub.com

MIDWAY CAFE It’s “Midway or the Highway” at this open mic. Perform whatever you’d like with your five minutes at this classic Jamaica Plain bar, and be sure to stick around to wet your whistle.. Sundays, 9 p.m., free, 3496 Washington St. midwaycafe.com

Sam Trottenberg can be reached at sam.trottenberg@globe.com.