Photo: Simon Darby
Dietrich Soakai is of Sāmoan, Tongan, German, Irish, Scottish and Fijian heritage and is a spoken word poet. He has been involved in the spoken word scene since 2011 where he joined the South Auckland Poets Collective (SAPC). Dietrich has performed in numerous shows with SAPC both nationally and internationally. Some highlights have been performing on various stages in Melbourne, Adelaide, Brisbane and in LA on the world-renowned spoken word stage Da Poetry Lounge. He also has performed with the Auckland Philharmonia Orchestra where he performed a poem for the ANZAC commemoration concert.
Dietrich has performed in the Parachute Festival, Festival One, Adelaide Fringe Festival with the multi-disciplinary performing arts group Nova Riche and more recently, the Auckland Writers Festival, He has also been commissioned to write and perform for organisations like CAP, Upside Youth Mentoring, Manukau District Health Board and Salvation Army.
Aside from writing, performing and creating, Dietrich has used Spoken Word Poetry as a medium to facilitate workshops of a reflective nature. These workshops have provided space for the participants to take stock of their lives, give voice to the things that may be difficult to express in a day to day context. He currently is writing a book of poetry and continues to facilitate Spoken Word workshops across the country.