Introducing the Chroniclers

Hello there! How’s 2019 shaping up for you so far?

Applications for this year have closed and, while the rest of the team are busy picking some of the best spoken word artists out there for Glastonbury Poetry&Words, we thought we’d take this opportunity to introduce you to two of the other people whose job starts well before June in chronicling what’s to come and the weekend itself.

Images

Did you know that Glastonbury Poetry&Words have our own illustrator and on-site artist during the Festival? Scott Tyrrell will be rendering the artists into art as he has done for the past several Glastonbury Festivals. Here’s some more about him:

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Scott has been a poet and performer since the turn of the century. An award-winning comedian, creative director and multiple slam-winning poet (including the BBC Slam and UK Anti-Slam), he has performed his work at Glastonbury, the Edinburgh Fringe, the Prague Fringe, STAnza, WOMAD, Larmer Tree and the Cheltenham Literature Festival. He has written for TV, radio and performed for Radio 4, Radio 3’s the Verb, Sky Atlantic, ITV, BBC4 and BBC Arts. His most recent poetry collection, Honest, is published by Burning Eye Books. He lives in Newcastle with his wife, son, a goldfish, a one-eyed cat and a small fluffy dog.

Words

And joining him to document the long weekend in words (and the occasional photo), and to let you know what’s coming up via this site, is Glastonbury Poetry&Words 2019’s blogger, Fay Roberts. Here’s some more about, well, me (hi):

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Fay Roberts is a peripatetic, percussive performance poet by night, and a professional projector by day. Ze runs the Cambridge branch of the Hammer & Tongue slam series, and zir own poetry label Allographic (which functions as a small press and a platform for performers), along with directing the Spoken Word section of The Free Fringe in Edinburgh from 2013 to present. Ze is a classically-trained singer, a self-taught drummer, a bit of a mumbler sometimes, and speaks with zir hands. In 2014, ze “won” the Edinburgh Fringe Anti-Slam (channelling the spirit of Melody Starchild). In 2017, zir first solo show, “The Selkie”, was shortlisted as best spoken word show of 2016-17.

(I promise to keep this “writing about myself in third person” stuff to a minimum! ☺)

Are you following us on social media? You can find us on Twitter, Facebook, and now Instagram, and we’ll be using the tag #GlastoPoetry19 where at all possible.

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CALLING ALL POETS, spoken word artists, raconteurs, stand-up poets, story tellers and slam champs…

2019 is awaiting your assault on the bastion of beastly wordsmithery in the freakish fields of Worthy…

tent outside

Lo! We at Poetry&Words are once again opening the floodgates to all you wizardly wonderful poetry fiends. So, if YOU want to perform your work on Glastonbury Festival’s poetry stage, then this is your chance! We’re looking for applications from experienced writers and performers, with something quite excellent to offer the audience of the world’s biggest greenfield arts festival.

If you think that could be you, then please e-mail poetryandwords@hotmail.co.uk with a short Bio and 1-3 video and/or audio files of you performing your work, preferably to a live audience. We’d prefer web links, but attachments (of manageable size!) will also be accepted. We will only view one application per person, so send us your best stuff first time around! Please don’t send Word files of your poems or links to your books. However good they are, it’s the performanceelement we need to be able to judge as well.

We do pay a fee, but this is only small, and overseas poets in particular should note that we are unable to provide travel expenses. Guest tickets are also beyond our power, but booked poets will receive a ticket for themselves as well as a camping pitch backstage of the Poetry&Words tent.

This year’s festival runs from June 26th– 30th2019. To find out more, go to: http://www.glastonburyfestivals.co.uk/

The deadline for applications is, strictly, 5pm on Friday 1stMarch 2019.  We regret that we cannot view any applications received after this time, so please make a note of the deadline and make sure you submit as much in advance as possible. Don’t miss your chance!

We hope that you’ll understand that, given the positively elephantine volume of applications we receive every year, we are not physically able to respond to requests for feedback or advice, or to let every applicant know how they’ve done. Successful artists should hear back from us by two months after the deadline at the latest.

You can also find us at:

http://www.facebook.com/GlastonburyFestivalPoetry
http://www.youtube.com/user/PoetryandWords
https://poetryandwordsblog.wordpress.com/
https://twitter.com/GlastonburyPoet

GLASTONBURY POETRY&WORDS: XXX HOT RECAP ACTION XXX

We’re trickling out some more summaries of Glastonbury Poetry&Words, in a kind of slow drip, water torture sort of way. What can we say? I still have a rucksack full of glitter on my sitting room floor. Let’s get to some more bits of that magic festival.

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Andy Craven-Griffiths

AndyCravenGriffiths (1)Andy Craven-Griffiths brings out the big guns right off the bat, a strategy that works for him in a real way: he doesn’t shy away from family, and love, and kindness, and those things that sit in the back of the throat, unsaid. Except, as you’re swept up in it, he goes ahead and says them. He talks about his family, unique (like all families, in their ways), on a trip to Spain, drinking with his older brother for the first time, in the sun: “Our pupils shrink in sync….huddling over the table practically cuddling – first time on the lash.” On his family,  his dad, a gesture of affection, hiding behind a curtain, ‘reveling in rebellion.’ He puts the family poems into a certain smaller set then moves to other themes, but the focus on kindness, on those most authentic and genuine interactions, remains a thread through all of it: “We know kindness like a horse knows running…” “Our frozen breaths speech bubbles for the unsayable..”  ” Utopia is not a low fat yogurt.” (I’m remixing these lines here).  He tells the story of a childhood friend he envied until he realized the jagged facets of his life behind the public face. He says of a girl he loved: “Her skin sings to me. I can’t believe how warm she is/how warm she keeps me.” And in a way that first seems unassuming and then builds until it hums into something profound, he does the same to the audience.

Koko Brown

kokobrown.pngKoko comes on stage and steps into her presence, unapologetic, self-possessed. She’s another poet who seems utterly at ease in front of an audience, a performer who reflects the light from a crowd and makes her own back at them. Poets who have a knack for blending music and poetry bring a special level of energy and complexity to the stage — it brings a kind of multiplying alchemy. Koko is a master at the loops and layers of sound which expand to fill the the space she makes for the audience. In a searing piece on sexism and systems of oppression she leads through lists of #notallmen, asking people to look at themselves and their own roles with honesty, for once. The women in the audience are the choir she’s preaching to – it’s the men she asks for a true reckoning. She intersperses spoken pieces with those layered with sung choruses, tones and percussion, describing ‘A wound that exists even if you don’t believe it.” In a stunner on race and all the societal shaming around colour and darkness in a skin she asks, ‘Why did I feel the need to hide from the sun all those times? Searching for shade is not fun.” And to end, and to blow the faces off the assembled crowd, she lets the loops soar as she ends in a whirlwind: “I thought I was a tree: I was the whole fucking garden.”  Damn.

Maddie Godfrey

maddiegodfreyMaddie, Australian via London, doesn’t need to shout to compel a crowd to silence. She has a manner on stage that seems both endearingly calm, a tiny bit shy, and and the same time, completely unfazed.  She meets the audience’s eye. “If my body was a poem,’ she begins as a refrain, “My body is an express train…”If my body was a poem it would not have any point…” and as though she’s commanding the crowd in real time she continues, ‘If my body was a poem the audience would not be still, it would writhe and jive and shake…” She has a way about her. She talks about planes, and fear of flying, drawing a laugh with the very useful advice of, ‘If you close the lid before flushing less of your soul gets sucked out.” She’s fearless in her choice of topic and the frank approach: she walks towards them with her words unadorned. “How hard it is to forget a language when your mouth knows the shape of the words.”  As though it was a theme for her fearsome set altogether she says ‘I am sorry for refusing to exist quietly.’

Debris Stevenson

debrisstevensonDebris does nothing less than storm the stage. A prophetess of grime, she brings a mixture of song, beats, and spoken pieces in a heated seat that pulls in a whopper crowd. A dancer and professional raver she dances even in her spoken pieces – it’s as though she’s pushing the words from her mouth with her muscles, like an engine. The charisma in it: it takes balls to sing a song acapella on stage, particularly on a poetry stage, but she sits into it. She sings a song to those who with different intelligences:  “A creative breach learn how you lear,  test score low,  educate high.  Learn how you learn. Ask why.” Her work is a continuing call for better – within the broken structures of society, on the dance floor, within ourselves and the perceptions which rule us: “My hair is big but my brain is bigger.” And in a scorcher of a piece set to a layered beat she has a kind of opposite call to arms, inspired by her love of solo raving and the men who hound her on the dance floor. It’s a cry for space and respect, and it sticks in the head for days, and she pulls the audience into it full-fleshed:  “Nah, don’t question question question me.” Brilliant.

Anna Freeman

AnnafreemanAnna Freeman mixes deeply personal, genuine moments with a perfectly timed sense of humour that makes a mix which always surprises the crowd. She pulls in small details of everyday life and somehow, like a sorcerer with an undercut, makes them profound. She describes her progressive childhood with the knock-off My Little Ponies, hauls a mighty laugh from the crowd with her mother’s plan to throw a party with beetroot hummus to celebrate her period.” She creates a rare and compelling intimacy with a crowd. Everyone in the tent feels as though they know her — or more importantly, that she knows them.  In a breakup poem she calls a partner her right hand, then says ‘how hard it is to cut off a right hand.” She offers her hopes for gone partners, mixing the heartbreaking and the hilarious: ‘I hope your poo slides out of you like butter.” She offers a love letter to a friend’s baby, who ‘smells like ham,’ and their future relationship ‘for all of my life.’ In a cutting and fierce retort to a sexist comment, a howl against mansplaining, she describes the true ‘conversations worth having.” In another cry for (and against) love she asks, “Where is this going? A binding verbal contract – isn’t that romantic?”

Toria Garblutt

toriagarbuttToria hates being called a ‘punk poet,’ so we won’t, but there is an element of the underground rock star about her. It’s the same kind of fearlessness and poetic upheaval. Her poems are half-songs, she uses repetition to bring the audience into some kind of new space. She talks about heartbreak, of a mosaic of broken dreams in the towns she knows: “I dumped you, liked you.” “Smack my ass so I know we’re all right.” She delves into those difficult topics without flinching, without looking away, without allowing the audience to look away — the things you can’t talk about, when ‘The only thing you’ve got is to look forward to some smoke.’ In her piece on Scotch Maggie she reaped death threats, saying, ‘the moral of the story is, don’t out drug dealers on YouTube.” Her voice has a lilt that builds almost like a tune until the audience is trance-like- crying, compelled, refusing to believe her when she says ‘Nothing matters now.”

Jemima Foxtrot

jemimafoxtrotA blues singer from the forties has a baby with a modern spoken word poet and that baby grew up to have a baby with campfire druid in an 80s windsuit with the confidence of a lead singer, that baby would be Jemima Foxtrot. She has an oldness about her, and a freshness, and she knows her way around a loop pedal.  She sings and her voice seems to come from another era – some of her poems are set to melody, and it sends them to some other level, as the fine language itself rides on top of the tunes: of a day in the forest, ‘We deck its dumb trees with our laughter….muzzled by sickly tradition….In this sweet smudge of wood I love you again.” Over and over the audience is struck by her skill with language, quietly virtuosic : “My soul is dragging audibly..I hope the next man I ramble with is a habit that’s cleaner to kick.” In the title poem to her book All Damn Day, she leaves the audience in tears with a love letter to the small humming of every day ordinary interaction, singing with strangers at a bus stop and when it arrives, ‘we poured onto it like sugar….a heavy bottomed joy…’ ending with the soaring line: “I am too grateful for it. It’s too good.”  Us too.

John Hegley

hegleychibiOur headliner, and a legend, John Hegley packs the tent to close out the day. Though he reads from his pieces they have the compelling pull which keeps the audience rapt. His poems are songs too, backed by a multi-instrumentalist for a kind of two-man variety show. He has the kind of attitude of another rocker who has hung up his vinyl pants  for a calmer raging. He describes a Luton bungalow, coyly reads the political scene, the ‘assist in the managing of their genius.” He takes aim at past politicos, singing an almost medieval court song about Henry 8th: ‘Can I have a divorce?’ said Henry the 8th, ‘Of course you can’t, said the Pope.’   He whips the audience into a gesticulating frenzy, enlisting them as actors in his piece with hand motions and divers and animals, ‘I am a  gillimot, I am a diver, an ocean arriver.”  He was called for an encore – -the first of the Poetry&Words stage, ending on a piece on George Best, his ‘twinkle twinkle little toes….I can see George best’s feet dribbling with my scribbling” and the au

GLASTONBURY POETRY&WORDS: FRIDAY, THE FIRST 7

OH MY HOLY GOD, YOU GUYS. We’re all in withdrawal from Glasto so let’s relive it together, day by day, shall we?

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The poetry at this stage Friday was face-melting, honest, and compelling as hell. Let’s hear about the first few hours, take a wee, then come back for more.

The AntiPoet

antipoetWe opened with Antipoet, the two-man, kilt-adorned, madcap bunch of poetic punks who have possibly the hardest job of the weekend, opening each stage from scratch at the start of the day.  The two mix music and poems, a double bass and high heeled patent leather boots. They introduce the audience to the martial artist physiotherapist, where ‘the only thing that lets him down is his bedside manner…” they go on to describe the ‘light saber in mummy’s special drawer…little baby you know bullshit when you smell it cause you’ve so much to endure.” Somehow they manage to create a magic energy from scratch at the start of each day, and offer a kind of solace and call to arms: “There’s no money in performance poetry,’ they sing. “We’ll play for sex! We’ll play for food!”

‘Did they just say they’d play for sex?’ asked an audience member at the edge of tent behind me.  ‘Who wouldn’t?’ his companion replied.

Emily Harrison

emilyharrisonEmily Harrison begins the day and has a kind of unapologetic confidence as she leads us down a path of fearless honesty on love, mental health, and a frank openness buoyed by a subtle comic timing and detail. On posh boys, she says ‘I want you to take me to the kind of restaurants where you order bread for the table.’  On revenge, she says it’s best served by the one who prepped it.’ Her serious subject matter is interlaid with comic gems: on a date at a fair she says, ‘Fairgrounds are where children get abducted.’  She did a poem about a mistress showing up at her lover’s funeral against his wife’s wishes, wearing ‘Tantrum’ red lipstick: ‘her holding the bible, me with dirty knees,’ which also went down a storm in a teepee next to a nudist colony the night before, backed by a live band.  There’s a deep current beneath these pieces, and an empathy, and a wicked sense of how to title them. She leaves the audience shook and filled with a kind of power with her refrain: ‘I am worth the trouble to keep.’ What a legend.

 

Roy Hutchins Reads Heathcote Williams

royhutchinsIn a unique concoction of a music collaboration Roy Hutchins honors the work of Heathcote Williams accompanied by a musician on guitar.  ‘The world began when we got tired of nothing,’ he begins, covering topics of establishment intrusion and the state of the nation. Fierce and eloquent, full of fire, he talks about electronic surveillance and in an accusation and rallying cry says ‘real terrorists hide behind banks and governments.’

Kieran King

kierenkingDown from (near) Manchester, Kieran brought his own unique sensibility to the Glasto stage, offering an ode and lament to punk rock with the refrain  ‘no more heroes…I’ve got my own mind I don’t need anyone to follow – I want a Shaun Ryder but I’m stuck with Bono.’ He is one of those poets who seems completely comfortable in front of an audience, as though he’s using his finely-tuned poems to offer them a tour of his house. This is a remarkable gift. He gives a love letter to Solford, his home town, too often a victim of Manchester claiming it during its victories and blaming it during its failures, painting his city as a ‘broadway musical.’  His poems touch on family and class and the fairytale of ordinary life, and he delves into it with love, and into love with all of its stumblings: The ‘Man who drives you mild…can’t make you cry like I can.’ In his poem on the note to self he entreats, ‘you don’t have to hide who you are…hauling the very breath from the audience as he finishes with life-charged cry: ‘Shadows fall behind you when you turn to face the sun. Don’t look back.’

Jasmine Gardosi

jasmnegardosiJasmine has a kind of unadorned confidence that becomes astonishingly compelling on stage.  She is one of those poets who seems to grow a foot (a decilitre? A kilogram? I’m American. Anyway, a lot.) when she opens her mouth on stage. And the language: it’s gorgeous. “Why does she write in nightclubs? She’s got blueprints all over her left limb and she ignores the men sticky as the floor.” Jasmine has this mad skill in creating new, unexpected structures for poems — in the midst of her nightclub poem her voice falls silent with an imagined beat, the inevitable staccato, chopped conversation of someone shouting in a bar.  She tells a story of coming out, inhaling and exhaling homophobic terms as they rise in her life, and in her mind, as air does. Also a teacher/activist for sexual education, she ends on an extraordinary piece that pulls the audience into a kind of choreographed witness, confession, and listening. She puts a new spin on the facilitator’s tool of asking an audience to raise their hands for a series of scenarios, with a cleverness that just gets more clever the more times you hear the piece: “If anyone has ever pressured you, you don’t have to do a thing for me.” Wherever she says to go, the audience follows.

Michael James Parker

Michael James Parker joined us last minute and the audience was luckier for it. He arrives on a kind of tide of poetic rage, looking with unabashed honesty at the state of the nation, at regret and nostalgia and a vision of wildness. On the UK and the Tories he looks at trickle down economics and the great grinding of the poor: ‘if the dregs of my wine dribble down my legs, lick it up. ‘ With a outraged political howl he asks ‘if you tax me do I not bleed?’ in Primal Scream he moved on to the uses and elements of art: “I want to write poems that sound like a look when I’m dancing.” A compelling presence on stage, he left us with a kind of call to arms, a cathartic push for something better.

Laurie Bolger

lauribolgerLaurie Bolger is another poet who seems fantastically comfortable on stage. Her voice has a kind of lilt that gives an audience the sense they are being confided in, that some sort of reality they never had a voice for was being recounted as an anecdote. And she’s funny — ‘Snoring so loud you could be sucking the paint off the walls.’ In her anti-hipster ode to the old man pub, ‘I’m drinking beer in a bar with no atmosphere…in some tarted up boozer in Shoreditch.’ She offers elegies for old London and a kind of lost authenticity.  There are lines in her set which arrest: on a breakup, she talks about ‘a look that fastens us.’ In ‘Ode to Your New Girlfriend’ which spans internet stalking, love and melancholy, watching as a distant witness to a person you used to know: ‘She’s a pop song, you’re a song people want played at their funeral…one of those songs that’s difficult to cover because there’s so much going on.” She tells stories that are relatable in their common honesty, “I’ve lost it in the veg aisle” and the entire audience is charmed, charmed utterly.

STAY TUNED FOR THE NEXT BATCH!!

 

Winston Plowes: Final Spoke-N-Word Poem of Glastonbury Festival

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Make Art Not War

Spangles for spirit

Walnut Whips for style

and Opal Fruits for when the night is bright

I was feeling crazy when the party arrived

don’t take my singing costume away from me

Unique and chic

Glastonbury is a dancing circus

where the big top is the world

everyone going berserk and the flags unfurled

in every child there’s a poem

in the fragile innocence of trees

something different to sinners.

Make Art not war

 

List of contributors – Caitlin O’Keeffe, London / Winston Plowes / Robyn + Nicky, Yorkshire / Katie, Brighton / Lisa Godwin / Glastonbury / Tula, Falmouth / Des + Neil, Laddingford / Ian, Barnsley

WINSTON PLOWES SPOKE-N-WORD DAY TWO

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HOPE IS A RED CRESCENT OF GLITTER AROUND MY LEFT EYE

Just seen Corbyn driving past,
the party convened
a meeting of minds
flocks of seagulls united in tents
singing with friends over marvellous music.

May harangued out of Liverpool
sinking in a bog of muddy waters.
Losing people on her way to a desert island
with a swiss army knife, a spanish guitar and a very long fishing rod.

Meanwhile…

There’s merry men searching for treats
wandering between stages
wearing unexpected smiles
for the canvas of crowds
people drinking and singing.

Oh… Jeremy Corbyn
Oh… Jeremy Corbyn
Oh… Jeremy Corbyn

 

List of contributors – Luke Wright / Gerry Potter / Sarah + Noel, Manchester / Ashley, Bath / Sam, Usk / Gareth, Edinburgh / Izzy, Dulwich / Elaine, Draycott / Gabriella + Jennifer, Herefordshire / Olivia + Toby, Trowbridge / Nom + Mark, London / Anon / Jon, Bristo

WINSTON PLOWES POEM DAY TWO

Winston Plowes brings his Spoke-n-Word show back for Day Two of Glastonbury, assembling a stunner of a poem from the assembled musings of random Glastonbury attendees.

RAINBOW ALLIANCE

The exciting markets were strange
surreal highlights of a yellow night:
My favourite colour, daffodils, sunshine and buttercups, the lemon in my gin.

Amber’s mothers poetry makes her life more colourful.
Red, white and blue, the colors of the soul emerging reborn by the sea, a living force awakened.

Happy random party people, peacefully dreaming, sleeping in red glasses.
Friends of the blues having too much fun in the meadows with toffee treats.
Protective and supportive like a well fitting boot.

List of contributors – Henry, London / David, Bristol / Dylan + Mum, Leamington Spa / Rachel, Greenwich / Jon, Greenwich / Rome + Lucius, New York / Verity, Hebden Bridge / Sue, Bristol / Julian, All Over The Place / Amber + Jaime, London / Cameron, New York / Mark, Manchester

 

 

Winston Plowes Wandering Spoke-n-Word: VOLUME 1

The first of our wandering poet Winston Hughes and his upside-down bicycle ‘spoke-n-word poetry show making collaborative pieces throughout the festival. Try this one on for size: Winston Plowes

FESTIVAL PALS

Two chaps,
5’4″ and knocking at the door
loosing the gift of speech
sharing their beers
in the summer sun.

Sitting back
listening to some poetry
and wonderful music,
drinking in the summer.

Happy memories are MADE
at Glastonbury.

List of contributors – Rhys + Adam, Weston-super-Mare / Chris, Wolverhampton / Paul, Rhubarb / Felix + Joe, London E5 / Tom + Hannah, Manchester / Joanne, London SW2 / Liz, Michael + Mark, Bath.

POETRY&WORDS LINE-UP: THE FINAL COUNTDOWN

Keeping this weird carvery metaphor going, sidle up with your hot plates for this selection of roasts and gravy in our final batch of Glasto poets for your delectation:

Jemima FoxtrotJemima Foxtrot 

Shortlisted for the Arts Foundation Spoken Word Fellowship 2015, Jemima performs extensively nationally and internationally including at the Barbican Main Hall, Latitude Festival, Galle Literary Festival & STANZA Poetry Festival. All Damn Day, Jemima’s first collection of poetry, was published by Burning Eye Books in September 2016.

Jemima has written many commissions including for the Tate Britain, the BBC, the Tate Modern and Latitude Festival.  Her poetry film Mirror, commissioned by BBC Arts as part of their Women who Spit series, was available on iplayer for over a year. She has also appeared on Lynn Barber’s episode of Arts Night on BBC2 and on the Tate Modern: Switched on programme on BBC 2 in June 2016 with a poem especially written to celebrate the opening of the Tate Modern’s new wing.

Jemima’s debut poetry play Melody (co-written with and directed by Lucy Allan), won the spoken word award at Buxton Fringe Festival 2015 and was critically acclaimed at its run at the PBH Free Fringe at Edinburgh 2015, receiving several excellent reviews. Melody was runner-up in the Best Spoken Word Show category at the 2016 Saboteur Awards.

Jemima’s second poetry play Above the Mealy-mouthed Sea has received funding from Arts Council England, will show a full run at the Edinburgh Festival 2017 before touring nationally in Autumn/Winter 2017/2018. Jemima is also collaborating with experimental theatre veterans IOU to create a site-specific, outdoor poetry show, Rear View, which is touring in summers 2017 & 2018.

Screen Shot 2017-06-20 at 10.11.58 Jonny Fluffypunk

An economic refugee from the London hinterland, Jonny ‘does’ spoken words that fuse bittersweet autobiography, disillusionment and surreal whimsy in an act which has established him as a firm favourite at gigs, festivals, arts centres and housing benefit offices up and down the country. He has two books of writings- ‘The Sustainable Nihilists’ Handbook’ and the spanking new ‘Poundland Rimbaud’-  both published by Burning Eye Books. Jonny’s solo no-fi stand-up spoken word show ‘Man Up, Jonny Fluffypunk- One Man’s Struggle with Late-Onset Responsibility’ spent 2015/16 touring around theatres, garden sheds, summer houses, empty shops and Britain’s other ad-hoc performance spaces in a blatant championing of homespun DIY culture. A new show, ‘How I Came To Be Where I Never Was,’ all about being the first punk in the village and other tiny epiphanies, is currently in development.

As well as all his own showing off, he also helps others show off, too; bringing obscure art to the masses as host of Stroud’s Mr Fluffypunk’s Penny Gaff and co-host of The Hip Yak Poetry Shack, the South West’s premier lo-fi pop-up poetry gig. Jonny also runs workshops anywhere and everywhere with anyone who’ll listen.

 Maddie Godfrey by David Cox PhotographyMaddie Godfrey 

Maddie Godfrey is an Australian-bred performance poet and writer. She has been best described as “a poetry fireball”. Her work aims to facilitate compassionate conversations about social issues.

At age 21 Maddie has performed at The Sydney Opera House, The Royal Albert Hall and The Bowery Poetry Club. She was the 2015 poetry slam champion of Western Australia and has since won poetry slam competitions in London, Cambridge, Oxford and online. Earlier this year Maddie competed in The Women Of The World Poetry Slam in Dallas, Texas. She has also featured at Amnesty International UK and at a TEDx Women event.

Off stage, Maddie Godfrey has been published in literary journals,anthologies, magazines and on a poster at The University of Western Australia. Her work has also been used as an educational resource in an Australian high-school exam and a sexual violence workshop in Italy.

In January 2017 Maddie wrote, directed and performed her solo show “If My Body Was A Poem” at Perth Fringe Festival. To her credit, the show received sold out audiences and rave reviews. OUTinPerth magazine praised Maddie for “treating her language as a duvet she wraps around the audience, drawing them into a sanctuary of sorts”.  Above all Maddie’s work is evocative, emotionally honest and entertaining. She is not a morning person. www.maddiegodfrey.com 

Erin 4Erin Fornoff  – Official Blogger for Poetry&Words Stage

Dublin-based poet Erin Fornoff is a “story-telling poet” hailing from the Appalachian mountains of North Carolina. She has performed her poetry at dozens of festivals and events including Electric Picnic, Cheltenham Literature Festival, Cuirt Festival, Glastonbury, and a national Irish tour with Hollie McNish. She has featured at Hozier and James Taylor concerts and collaborated with street artists, filmmakers, and musicians. Her poem ‘Thigh’ was included in Best New English and Irish Poets 2016 and her poem “To Make Things’ was commissioned by RTE for national broadcast and performance at Dublin Castle.

Her chapbook Folk Heroes was published by Stewed Rhubarb Press and her first collection will be published this autumn by Dedalus Press. She was part of Poetry Ireland Introductions 2014, won the Stanza Digital Slam in 2013, and her poems and stories have been shortlisted for the Bridport Prize and featured on posters and curriculum nationwide for Ireland’s National Poetry Day. In 2015 she received an Arts Council bursary for her first novel Better People.  She is co-founder and Programme director for Lingo, Ireland’s first ever spoken word festival.  She is working on a large scale collaboration with poetry, film, and large scale street art focusing on addiction, mental health, and asylum seekers in Ireland.

 Winston PlowesWinston Plowes – Spoke-n-Word Walkabout Show

Based near Hebden Bridge in Calderdale Winston Plowes lives aboard his floating home with his cat ‘Fatty’. In the past year he has collaborated with The Arvon Foundation, the BBC, Glastonbury Festival, UCLAN and Manchester Museum and has recently tutored on courses and workshops for The Square Chapel, The Prince’s Foundation for Children & the Arts and West Yorkshire Playhouse. As Poet in Residence for the Rochdale Canal Festival in 2012 and The Hebden Bridge Arts Festival for the past three years he has being lucky enough to share his community orientated poetry with a wider audience. As Judge for the Found Poetry Review and author of experimental work published in over 50 journals worldwide he gets the chance to play with our precious language and by providing workshops for schools hopes to continue to inspire through mutual creativity for many years to come. The jointly self-published Misery Begins at Home, 2010 and Micro Chap-book Extras, Origami Press, 2014 will soon be followed by his first collection of ghazals First of all I Wrote Your Name, Stairwell Books. Winston is also inventor of the world’s first (and possibly last) Random Poetry Generating Bicycle, the ‘Spoke-n-Word’.

 Emily Harrison poetry (1)Emily Harrison

Emily Harrison performs regularly in London and across the UK. She was recently awarded Best Spoken Word Performer 2016 at The Saboteur Awards. Emily has previously performed at Latitude, WOMAD and In The Woods Festival. Other performances include Tongue Fu, Bang Said The Gun, Stand Up and Spit and Hammer & Tongue Hackney and Oxford. “Astute and at times painfully humorous”, her first full-length collection with Burning Eye Books was released last year. Emily is currently working on a second collection, which she believes many of the men who have passed through her life will surely be thrilled to hear.

royhutchinsRoy Hutchins Reads Heathcote Williams

Roy Hutchins performs the comic verse of Heathcote Williams, accompanied on guitar by Dr Blue. 3 short poems that take a satirical look at dissent, surveillance and the cult of ancient and modern celebrity.

 

 

Scott Tyrrell by James SebrightScott Tyrrell

This Newcastle-based stand up poet has been writing and performing poetry and comedy since the turn of the century. An award-winning comedian as well as a national slam winning poet, he has performed his work around the UK, Europe and at many festivals including the Edinburgh Fringe, the Prague Fringe, WOMAD, Larmer Tree and Glastonbury – where he was Poetry Blogger in Residence in 2015. He has performed on ITV, BBC Arts, Sky Atlantic, Radio 4 and Radio 3’s Free Thinking festival.

He is author of two collections of Poetry; most recently, the warmly received ‘Grown Up’ published by Red Squirrel Press. His new collection is due out later this year published by Burning Eye Books.

 

 Debris StevensonDebris Stevenson

At secondary school 2002 – 2008 Debris was educated through the evolution of Grime and found poetry in the mouths of the testosterone and teenagers around her. Nurtured by the Roundhouse, Debris was then followed by Chanel4 for 2 years, published by organisations such as, Louis Vuitton, Oxford University, BBC Radio 4 and finally by Flipped Eye with her debut pamphlet, Pigeon Party.

A social carrier pigeon, Debris has performed her poetry from an ampitheatre in Kayamandi, South Africa to a classroom in Englewood, Chicago. Curve Theatre breakthrough Artist, Heatwave freestyle dancer and Mouthy Poet Founder, Debris has been awarded over £250,000 by Arts Council England to develop young talent in the East Midlands and beyond.

Debris can often be found dancing sober and alone to Grime, Soca or Dancehall but is mainly now focusing on her debut grime poetry show, Poet in da Corner. 

 Bristol Art Library and Annabel Other4Anabel Other’s Poetry Library (walkabout act)

The Bristol Art Library is a fully functioning public library housed in a wooden cabinet the size of a small suitcase. Annabel Other, the artist, created the library in 1998 and is the Head Librarian. The library’s volumes cover a wide range of subjects, from palaeontology to astronomy, with 250 books (all 5 in x 4 in) made by artists and practitioners from all areas of the arts and sciences. Membership of Bristol Art Library is free, and once you have joined and received your manilla reader’s ticket you may visit the library and peruse its volumes anywhere in the world. The library now has 12000 members, a gift shop and a friends’ organisation FOTBAL (Friends of The Bristol Art Library).