Archive
Tag "Jawdance"

Apples and Snakes’ Snakebaskets are monthly newsletters tailored for each region we work in. Here you will find lots of exciting spoken word stuff and more about what we are up to in your area. These are extracts – sign up here to receive the whole message! 

“just wanted to say thanks for one of the best poetry-info emails I’ve ever received. Hope to attend at least a couple of the events – brilliant!” London Snakebasket reader.

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From London Coordinator Russell

There, I knew it was a mistake to mention the weather in last month’s Snakebasket. No sooner had we pressed ‘send’ than the orders started rolling in at the Datchet branch of Sandbags-R-Us. Sorry about that.

So – March, then. You’ll be delighted to hear that we are forging ahead with Spoke – the spoken-word initiative in and around Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park. This month it comprises a best-of show from our schools residencies, and the start of a residency in the Park itself. The mighty Michael Rosen will be there on the 21st – as will our freshly-creosoted Poetry Potting-Shed. Huzza!

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Elsewhere, we’ll be Jawdancing on the 26th, with a special guest to mark Bangladesh Independence Day. Stop me if you’ve heard this one before, but please arrive early if you want an open-mic slot. Come 6.45, they’re pretty thin on the ground.

There’ll be masterclasses, too: Jean ‘Binta’ Breeze tackling performance techniques on the 5th, and Chanje Kunda showing you how to apply for Arts Council funding on the 24th. In both cases, take it from one who knows. As ever, both sessions are absolutely free. And watch out for a tree-mendous opportunity below. Bit of a joke, there.

Ça suffit.

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From West Midlands Coordinator Bohdan
Hello all!
March is here – there must be a joke in there about, oh, I don’t know, poetry putting a spring in your step. But we are not here to make feeble puns! Words can be put to better uses.

175x200Level-Up-Banner-LogoLevel UP has launched to huge success: there was an impressive amount of talent in the REP that night, and our headliner, Dizraeli, seemed surprised and impressed with Birmingham’s young poets. The next one is happening on the 31st, and whether you want to perform or not, you shouldn’t sleep on this event – it’ll be the stuff of legends one day. And if you are a young poet trying to work up the courage to perform, remember the weekly academies held every Friday, are there to help you work on craft and confidence.

Hit the Ode is back on the 20th, as reliable as the seasons, but this time we bring the old and the new together, with feature sets from veteran performer Martin Glynn, British Sign Language poet Donna Williams, and Scotlands indomitable (and award-winning) Rachel McCrum. Also, we will be announcing some incredibly exciting news at that event, concerning line-ups and plans for world domination. So, yes – another one not to miss.

Take a look below at Pangaea Poetry Slam – an online poetry slam for poets from around the world to come together to share, discuss and create work. Plus: there’s a chance to win a prize of up to £500 while helping Apples and Snakes to understand their audiences better!

Lucky you!

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From North East Coordinator Kirsten

Oh my word, people are you ready?

175x200 Scratch Club Tyne Performance_A3_poster_commercial

On the 5th March you really need to hoy yourself down to ARC for Articulate – firstly, a showing of the wonderful entries for the Read Our Lips Filmpoem Competition, where one lucky poet will win £100, and then the amazing Ross Sutherland performing his Edinburgh Fringe smash-hit show Stand By For Tape Back-Up. Ever wondered if you could commune with the spirit of your late grandfather using looped video clips from the Crystal Maze? Ross has…

As ever, JibbaJabba is there to brighten your life on the 27th, with featured poet Rachel McCrum coming down from running the mega Rally & Broad night in Edinburgh to grace us with her very beautiful, literate poetry.

And all through March, every Thursday at 5pm, you can hear our Home Cooking broadcast on www.basic.fmMike Edwards and his Imaginary Friends, featuring very skillful and very funny characters

Take a look below at Pangaea Poetry Slam – an online poetry slam for poets from around the world to come together to share, discuss and create work.

Plus: there’s a chance to win a

prize of up to £500 while helping Apples and Snakes to understand their audiences better!

Until next time…

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From South East Coordinator Pete

Hello,

BigTalk-Logo-175x200

Despite it being the middle of the winter monsoon season in Margate we had a lovely cosy Big Talk at the Tom Thumb at the end of January, with Ben Lawrence and Simon Mole. Then 451 came round again and as well as great sets from Dave Allen and the incomparable Patience Agbabi, the young Flip the Script poets of the Isle of Wight showed their mettle by performing for the first time off the island in front of a room of strangers.

Looking to the future, the One Way Ticket tour begins in earnest in March at both the Tom Thumb Theatre in Margate on the 22nd and SS Sheildhall in Southampton on the 29th before relocating to LV21 in Gilligham for some early April half-term performances. Full details about the tour below.

Also coming your way in March is the Archimedes Screw Showcase on the 14th with UK Poetry Slam Champion (2007) Deanna Rodger. The delightful Sabrina Mahfouz headlines the International Woman Scream Poetry Festival on the 22nd. And don’t miss the chance to see funny man Rob Auton perform at Big Talk on the 28th.

Couple of heads-ups: only a few days left to apply for Poetry&Words at Glastonbury Festival and check out the ‘Applying for Grants’ workshop in Brighton, all very useful stuff. And there’s a chance to win a prize of up to £500 while helping Apples and Snakes to understand their audiences better!

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From South West Coordinator Gina

Heading into spring and we have lots spoken word treats for you to enjoy this March.

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For International Women’s day see The Promise Gig on Saturday 8 March with an exciting range of female voices.There’s poetry to inspire and delight at Forked on Thursday 20 March and coming up on Wednesday 2 April in Barnstaple’s Queen’s Theatre keep an eye out for Gallery Sessions.

Take a look below at Pangaea Poetry Slam – an online poetry slam for poets from around the world to come together to share, discuss and create work.

And there’s a chance to win a prize of up to £500 while helping Apples and Snakes to understand their audiences better!

That’s all for now, see you at a poetry event soon.

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Apples and Snakes’ Snakebaskets are monthly newsletters tailored for each region we work in. Here you will find lots of exciting spoken word stuff and more about what we are up to in your area. These are extracts – sign up here to receive the whole message! 

“just wanted to say thanks for one of the best poetry-info emails I’ve ever received. Hope to attend at least a couple of the events – brilliant!” London Snakebasket reader.

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From London coordinator Russell

175x200Workshop

Happy New Year!

Admittedly premature, as we’re sending this out before Christmas, but that’s the way we roll: always forging ahead into brave new futures. A dizzying concept to those of us who don’t even know what we’re doing this afternoon.

Yet we cannot countenance the future without shouldering the trappings of our past, and so we continue to celebrate the fiftieth anniversary of Martin Luther King Jr’s ’I Have a Dream’ speech with showcase events at Woolwich Library on the 21st and theStephen Lawrence Centre on the 27thZena Edwards! Charlie Dark! Kenny Baraka! Three tremendous ways to start the year!

Jawdance returns on the 22nd, and it gets more popular with each passing month. A reminder, therefore, to arrive early if you’d like to perform: the list opens at 6.15pm and fills up in about twenty minutes. As always, we will bend over backwards to accommodate as many of you as we possibly can. Watch us.

And – as our transatlantic geomorphs say – that’s all she wrote. (See what I did there – signed off with a writing–y kind of phrase?) (Signed off – there’s another one.)

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From West Midlands coordinator Bohdan

Hello,HTO-NEW-175x200-web

So, while you wind down and prepare for the holidays, Apples and Snakes is sending out the January Snakebasket a wee bit ahead to give you enough time to digest it along with all of the festive frivolities.

We’ll be raring to go on Thursday 16th January with a new year edition of Hit The Ode at The Victoria, Birmingham, line-up is currently a closely guarded secret, keep an eye on the Hit The Ode Facebook page for further announcements!

The new year will bring you bright new projects, the return of old favourites including Level UP, Lit Fuse and Wordsmiths & Coand the Midlands poetry scene continues to thrive with great work and top artists.

Happy holidays folks! 

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From North East Coordinator Kirsten

175x200 Scratch Club Tyne Performance_A3_poster_commercial2014!! Let me at it!!!!

We’re sending our January Snakebasket early as we have stacks of superb spoken word coming up – starting with the dazzlingHannah Silva, visiting from Birmingham to lead two workshops. Everyone can enjoy an evening of her poetry alongside stunning musician Beccy Owen on Friday 10 January at Live Theatre.

Workshops continue with a day of playfulness on Sunday 19 January – writing for kids with the talented Dominic Berry, poet in residence at Newcastle Libraries. Then stick around to have fun with physical performance, led by Gabriele Heller ofTheatre-between also on the 19th

It’s a field-day for audiences on Thursday 23 January as Apples puts up the prize for SLAMalgamate, the union of no less than three local spoken word nights all sending in their champions!

And all through January, every Thursday at 5pm, you can hearHenry Raby’s Home Cooking broadcast on www.basic.fm -Studs, Safety Pins and Spoken Words – Punk Poetry’s Not Dead!

HEADS UP! After his standing ovation at JibbaJabba last November, Rob Auton returns on Saturday 1 February with hisSky Show – get there early, it’ll be standing room only!

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From South East Coordinator Pete

Season’s Greetings! BigTalk-Logo-175x200

At the end of November at Big Talk, Hastings-based Steve Tasane read and performed from his first novel for teens, Blood Donors, a gore-fest of inner-city creepiness,

supported by Lucy Lepchani, performing from her new collection Ladygardens. December’s 451 saw Rob Gee perform his touching and funny one-man show Forget Me Not to an enthralled audience. It was a tour de force performance and was ably supported byArchimedes Screw Showcase winner from November, Kaleigh O’Reilly, plus an open mic as multifarious as ever.

In Brighton, Hammer & Tongue held their annual champion of champions slam and the winner, for the second year on the trot, was Tommy Sissons, who recently appeared in Apples and Snakes’ Public Address II national tour and is rapidly earning a name for himself.

It’s been a full year for Apples and Snakes South East with plenty to be proud and excited about and there’s no letup in 2014 as plans for Spoke ‘N’ Word, the bicycle-powered Kent-touring young person slam, develop and the performance poetry pipeline is filling with further opportunities and events. Keep your ears peeled for what’s coming up including Big Talk on the 31st and Archimedes Screw on the 10th and have a restive festive season.

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From South West coordinator Gina

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Hello,

I do hope you are all enjoying the Christmas sparkle! We’re sending out our January Snakebasket a wee bit ahead this month to give you enough time to digest it along with all of the other seasonal festivities.

Coming up on Sunday 5th January and to start the new year with a bang, we bring you a special edition of Spokes Amaze!featuring Luke Wright‘s new one-man show, Essex Lion.

Then on Thursday 23rd January Forked in Plymouth returns featuring amongst many others, international performance poet and true spoken word star, Hollie McNish.

Well that’s certainly enough to warm your cockles!

Hope you all have a lovely Christmas and New Year.

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Read More

Apples and Snakes’ Snakebaskets are monthly newsletters tailored for each region we work in. Here you will find lots of exciting spoken word stuff and more about what we are up to in your area. These are extracts – sign up here to receive the whole message!

“just wanted to say thanks for one of the best poetry-info emails I’ve ever received. Hope to attend at least a couple of the events – brilliant!” London Snakebasket reader.

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From London Coordinator Russell
LeeFest 200x200Gosh, halfway through the year already. Can you believe it? I have Christmas presents that I’ve still not taken out of their packets yet. (I also have a Christmas cake that says ‘Best before Feb 2010′ on the box, but that’s a whole ‘nother story.) As it’s summertime, we’ll be plying our poetry at a couple of festivals, and I’m talking about real, sleeping-in-compost festivals – none of this Hay-on-Wye stuff. That’s outer London’s own Leefest, and Suffolk’s mighty Latitude. Details below.

Other than that, we’ll be Jawdancing again on the fourth Wednesday (before ‘going dark’ for a month). And there’ll also be another Storycraft session for the little ones. An early heads-up, too, for our ever-popular Word’s a Stage, which will be back at the Gallery Cafe on Fri 2 August, with Niall O’Sullivan, Dean McCaffrey, Jason Pilley and many many more (actually one more). Away – hold, enough! Hope to see you at a poetry gig soon.

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From West Midlands Coordinator Bohdan
jazz-shop-100x100Hello all! July has arrived. That’s your cue, sun, do your thing. Well, as we wait for it to emerge, we can always amuse ourselves with poetry. Much of our regular programming pauses for the summer months: Hit the Ode, Wordsmiths & Co. and Level UP will all return after the holidays. In the meantime, check out wordsmithsand.co for videos of past editions, and keep monitoring Hit the Ode’s Facebook page, as we will be announcing the premiere of our mini-documentary about the night in the next few weeks. Note that Poets’ Place continues unabashed – on the 13th this month!

But of course we would not dream of leaving you bereft of live poetry, and there are two major events I would like to call to your attention. First, I’m very excited to announce Poetry at the Jazz Shop: a series of lunchtime poetry events held in a shopping unit at the Great Western Arcade, as part of the Birmingham Jazz and Blues Festival. There will be 8 half-hour shows, each curated by a different local poetry group or community – Hit the Ode on the 12th, for example – but come to them all! It’s a real celebration of the local talent, and an unparalleled opportunity to sample new artists and take in some nourishing poetry during your lunch break. Exciting times!

And second – the Ledbury Poetry Festival begins soon, and the spoken word section this year is particularly exciting: highlights include Kate Tempest, Tim Clare as Pub Stuntman, Mr Gee, and the return of Bang Said the Gun. You’ll find more details after the jump; well worth checking out!

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From North East Coordinator Kirsten
HC_100x100Some super spoken goodies for you in July – kicking off with the first ever appearance of poetry at the brilliant NARC.Fest on the 6th. Join us at The Cycle Hub at the mouth of Newcastle’s hip-and-happening Ouseburn Valley for performances by newcomer Deborah Moore, rising star Asa J Maddison, punk favourite Ann Porro, and the magnificent Scott Tyrell. Our season of Poetry Sundays at NeST concludes with Writing in Character on the 14th, a workshop and performance with Mike Edwards. And if you’re a writer looking to improve the way you use online platforms for self-promotion and creative practise, check out our fantastic workshop with Jacob Sam-la Rose on the 20th.

And of course there is Scratch Tyne on the 21st – your chance to shape the skills of our poets, as we ask not for your money but for your feedback! Join us for our last gathering before August break, and see what’s new. July’s Home Cooking creative radio commission is on the 11th, and comes from Cuckoo Writers, the group of young people supported by New Writing North who took a trip down Northumberland Street with poet John Challis. Tune in to www.basic.fm at 1pm every Thursday for spoken word!

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From South East Coordinator Pete
BigTalk-Logo-100x100Since I last Snakebasketted (is that a real word?) there’s been a couple of Apples and Snakes events happening in the South East: tagged right on the end of May, Big Talk brought more rocking good poetry to Margate in the guise of Raymond Antrobus and Stewart Taylor – and look out for the Big Talk naughty but nice summer show on Friday 26 July (details below). Here in Southampton, 451 was a jaw-dropping experience for some (in a good way) with Zena Edwards filling the room with velvety vocal vibes and Jonny Fluffyunk raising great guffaws of goodness.

There’s also been an Apples and Snakes supported project running in Hampshire in June called Writing With My Eyes in which poets have been working with young people to produce interactive poetry for iBooks. More about that project here and here. And finally, a big congratulations (CONGRATULATIONS!) to ArtfulScribe for the completion of their first hugely successful year promoting poetry through performance, events and workshops – including Archimedes Screw, this month on the 12th!

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From South West Coordinator Gina

May_100x100July is upon us with plenty of poetry opportunities and events that come highly recommended by Apples and Snakes SW. None more so than our very own FORKED! Returning at an earlier date of 11th July with what can only be described as an outstanding and eclectic line up! We’ve got punk poetry ranting complete with double bass, award winning Welsh poetry pearls, wacky Cornish comic rhymes and a dollop of witty absurdist writing thrown in for good measure. If your aged 13-19 and live in Wiltshire head to Salisbury Arts Centre on the 31st for the Hijack All-Dayer and catch Chris Redmond running Spoken Word workshops courtesy of Apples and Snakes. All in all fun times this July!

 

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These are extracts from June’s Snakebaskets. Sign up here to receive the whole message!

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From London Coordinator Russell

Apr-100x100Hi there, poetry-pickers. Join us, if you will, on a journey into the centre of 2013, in a month that, like an ill-cast pantomime-horse, is considerably more substantial in its posterior than in its front bit. We’ll be proffering paternally prandial poetry at St Thomas’s Hospital on the 17th, with our Fathers’ Day Spoken Word Lunch. And Storycraft also on the 17th will be delighting those immediate products of paternalism – da littluns – later that same day at Rich Mix.

There’s the latest in our successful Writing Room series – this one featuring the mighty Joelle Tayloron the 25th, followed swiftly by Jawdance on the 26th, the open mic that’s as exciting as a cartoon skeleton playing its own ribcage like a xylophone. But which won’t give you nightmares. Possibly. Finally, a quick reminder for all you poets: the National Poetry Competition is now open for entries, and has a £5,000 first prize. Thinking of entering? Details here

That’s all. 10-10 till we do it again, as we used to say in CB radio days.

 

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From West Midlands Coordinator Bohdan
hto_100x100Hello all! And just like that, we find ourselves in June. This month, several of our regular events will have their final regular installments before they go on their yearly summer hiatus. So, if you want to catch Hit the Ode, Level Up, and Wordsmiths & Co. before autumn, here’s your last chance. Look for line-ups, dates and details after the jump… And believe me, it’s well worth your time.

This month will also be the last month of filming for the Hit the Ode documentary, so if you would like to feature in the final edit – performing your work, nodding wisely in the audience, enlightening the world during an interview – get thee to the Victoria. And just a sneak peek into the future, let me tell you how excited I am at the prospect of working with the Birmingham Jazz & Blues Festival. We’ll be bringing you 8, count them, 8 lunch time poetry shows, each curated by a different local community of poets. Can’t wait.

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From North East Coordinator Kirsten
LukeWrightFavPoet-100x100Hello! This month if you come to anything, come to Articulate on the 12th to see the phenomenally talented Luke Wright perform his show Your New Favourite Poet, with support from the wonderful Amanda Baker. Poetry Sundays continue at NeST on the 9th with Vowel Movements, a workshop and performance with Jenni Pascoe. And on the radio, it’s the turn of Joel Barrow to take on the Home Cooking mantle with a selection of live recordings from the recent highly-praised musical poetry improv sessions, which took place at System Gallery as part of The Late Shows. Tune in to basic.fm at 1pm on the 6th June for spoken word!

And if that’s not enough, this month’s Scratch Tyne on the 16th is a special launch event for Dawn Furness with her spoken word book/CD Adult Orphan, which fuses poetry, photography and music as she examines the process of clearing out her parents’ attic after their death and re-encountering the ephemera of childhood. Participants are invited to bring a contribution of food to the party of a dish or canapé that they remember that holds special memories from their childhood.

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From South East Coordinator Pete
451_Web-thumb-100x100Hello, it’s that time of the month when the ping of the Snakebasket arriving in your inbox wakes you from your post lunch early-summer dreaming. Or something.?? There’s plenty to occupy poetic minds across the South East in June, some of which is listed below, including the monumental line-up of Zena Edwards and Jonny Fluffypunk at 451 on Monday 17 June,  with 451’s usual host in an unusual role – Rob Casey will have to introduce himself. (Let’s hope he doesn’t trip over his own hyperbole when he’s stepping onto the stage).

In May the young poets of Brighton took on the young MC’s of Brighton in Brighton’s first ever Youth Poets vs MC’s event, and the winner was … well, if you weren’t there you won’t know, but the gauntlet has definitely been thrown down for a re-match next year.* Congratulations goes out to ArtfulScribe’s Matt West who was appointed Southampton’s first ever Children’s Poet Laureate in May. His role will be to inspire youngsters in all corners of the city to enjoy reading and writing poetry. ??*The winner was youth spoken word.

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From South West Coordinator Gina

Sally-Jenkinson-100x100Welcome wordlings! First up, we bring you the beautiful, moving and witty tale that is Folly by the brilliant Sally Jenkinson on the 6th. Full of heartfelt and honest stories of traveling and searching for oneself accompanied by a delightful original guitar score. You will also catch the energetic story force known as Clive Pig, all in all a fantastic quality evening not to be missed. Later in the month check out Spectacular Vernacular from the 20-22 June, a poetry show supported by Apples and Snakes, part of the brilliant Fringe TheatreFest. This year I’ve added some superb regional talent to the usual enchanting mix of poets and performers. See you at a gig!

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These are extracts from March’s Snakebaskets. Sign up here to receive the whole message!

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I don’t know about you, but I feel like things are constantly speeding up in the poetry world. Wouldn’t you agree? Take a look!

Level-Up-Logo-100x100The big news this month is the launch of Level Up on the 28th in collaboration with Write Down Speak Up and with the support of a grant from the Birmingham City Council. It’s a quality spoken word night aimed squarely at young people – if you’re aged between 12-19, this is your chance to make your voice heard… And to meet some of the country’s best performers. We haven’t published the full line-up yet, but because it’s you, I’ll give you some names: Polarbear. Hollie McNish. Dizraeli. Kate Tempest. Dreadlock Alien. I know, right? More good news: Poets’ Place returns in a new venue – so once again you can use your Saturday afternoons to chat, write, and share tips with fellow poets. That’s the 9th and 23rd!

Word-Smiths-175x200After a successful run of 7 workshops, Power Plant has come to an end. If you attend one or more of the sessions, I’d love to hear from you – tell me what you thought of them, whether you think the series was useful, and what you would like future masterclasses to focus on. Let’s make the second season even more powerful. And, er, plant-like, I guess. There’s more – a very special Hit the Ode on the 21st, Wordsmiths & Co. featuring Jean ‘Binta’ Breeze and Daljit Nagra on the 13th, and some real gems in the “recommended” section – but you can check all this yourself after the jump.

See you very soon!
Bohdan Piasecki, Apples and Snakes West Midlands Coordinator

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March is chock-full of events and opportunities from Apples and Snakes, so please excuse the less-than-ambling preamble and allow us to sprint straight to what’s happening this month.

Two workshops in March to put you on the path: this very Friday (the 1st) the masterful Steve Tasane leads our Poetry Toolkit masterclass in being a performance poet – and he should know, having made a living from it for 20 years. A month of back-to-basics, then, as we explore all things digital on the 28th with Charlie Dark and our very own Digital Marketer Dan Simpson at our Social Media for Beginners workshop.

WaS-100x100Event-wise, we’ve something for everyone this month. If you find yourself around St. Thomas’ Hospital on the 11th then you’re in for a treat, as Zena Edwards and Hollie McNish perform some Spoken Word at Lunch – sort of a Mother’s Day / International Women’s Day special, that one. We’re supporting new work too, with Si Mole and John Berkavitch scratching shows on the 15th at that fancy new Culture Space in Canada Water, before The Word’s a Stage on the 20th at the Gallery Café sees four exciting poets each perform a new 20 minute piece they’ve written for the occasion. Is that enough newness?

thumb100x100No? Well how about our two participation projects, SPINE and SWITCH? If you (or someone you know!) are aged 12-19, you get to work with Malika Booker and be part of Vauxhall Voices – that’s SPINE! As for SWITCH, 15-18 year olds write with Charlie Dark in bringing spoken word and climate change together. And then there’s The Writing Room for 16-25s on the 28th, this month led by Inua Ellams – find out more on our new Facebook page! All exciting projects – email Daisy (daisy@applesandsnakes.org) to find out more or to take part!

Two regular events at Rich Mix too: StoryCraft for the 2-5s is happening on the 18th, plus our big open-mic night Jawdance rounds off the month, this time hosted by Paula Varjack – usual day (4th Wednesday of the month = 27th), usual place (Rich Mix – but you know that by now, right?). And lastly, Apples and Snakes has been awarded a grant from the Clore Poetry and Literature Awards Duffield Foundation in order to deliver a series of storytelling and creative writing sessions to young patients at The Royal London Children’s Hospital in Whitechapel, together with Vital Arts, the arts organisation for Barts NHS Trust. Look out for that later this year!
Russell Thompson, Programme Coordinator for London

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This March a spoken-word spring is … er …springing, with performance poetry events popping their heads above the soil all over the place like bright little croci. February’s 451 was packed out (apologies to those who turned up and couldn’t get in) and rocked to the sound of the open mikers, the Fairbridge Collective, Stewart Taylor, Michael James Parker and Joelle Taylor.

BigTalk-Logo-100x100March brings a flurry of new events around the region alongside the regular open mics and slams; including a new slam in Tunbridge Wells and a veritable spring blossoming of spoken word in Southampton with both Mark Grist and Steve Larkin performing one-person shows and the Biscuit Poets of Totton performing their first ever poetry show with Jonny Fluffypunk on the 15th. There’ll also be Big Talk at the end of the month (the 29th!) in Margate with the brilliant Francesca Beard and young slam-champ Tom Sissons – see events below for details.

And don’t forget that the deadline for Glastonbury Festival poetry falls on 10th March, so if you haven’t sent your CV and samples in to them, get sending!
Pete Hunter, South East Coordinator

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Hello my lovelies! You won’t believe how much great stuff I’ve got for you …

Amuse_Bouche_100x100Amuse Bouche comes to Live Theatre on the 19th, so all you Tynesiders can get a free dose of specially selected spoken word from Andrew Sclater, Elaine Cusack and Rowan McCabe. Scratch Tyne on the 17th is a party with Material Magazine launching their March edition AND celebrating their first birthday – expect a new poets, live music from Miss Danby and Dead Peasants, and a truly bizarre and kitch post-show playlist if current Facebook track suggestions are anything to go by. And Black Light Engine Room on the 22nd gets their first dose of Apples support as we bring the wonderful Anita Govan down from her native Edinburgh to headline this Boro institution!

Nice. HEADS UP!  THE LEGENDARY DUB DIVA JEAN BINTA BREEZE M.B.E. PLAYS RADIKAL WORDS AT NORTHERN STAGE ON 10 APRIL, GET YOUR TICKETS EARLY AS IT WILL SELL OUT!!!
Kirsten Luckins, North East Coordinator

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May_100x100FORKED is back on the 21st with another great line up, including Exeter Poetry Fest 2012 Slam champion, Robert Garnham, young gun Ben Norris and Bristol poet Liz Greenfield. Keeping you on the edge of your seats the headline act is still to be confirmed! You will just have to turn up and find out who will complete your poetry plate this month, or keep an eye on facebook!

The culmination of Word Play is happening too - The Thing Is… showcase will see participants who have been work-shopping with poets over the last few months come together and demonstrate their new found writing and poetry skills, in an array of interesting ways.

Until next month!

Gina Sherman, South West Programme Coordinator

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These are extracts from March’s Snakebaskets. Apples and Snakes’ Snakebaskets are monthly newsletters tailored for each region we work in. Here you will find lots of exciting spoken word stuff and more about what we are up to in your area. Why not join our mailing list? Click here for more.

“just wanted to say thanks for one of the best poetry-info emails I’ve ever received. Hope to attend at least a couple of the events – brilliant!” London Snakebasket reader.

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CarlSo, a week with Apples and Snakes… that seemingly omnipresent organisation lurking behind every facebook group and flyer, stamped on workshops and festivals and showcases up and down the country. What’s it actually like here? Do sonnets dribble out of cracks in the ceiling? Do the staff sit on beanbags and host office-slams over lunch break? How does an organisation so rich and essential to poetry in this country keep functioning?

Honestly? The same way every other organisation functions – with hard work and regular, daily commitments. Most of my time here has been spent at a desk learning how databases and mailing lists are maintained, how to schedule blog posts and tweets and format websites – the kind of work I could’ve been doing at an office somewhere in Birmingham. Of course, that’s not all I’ve done. There’s also been Jawdance and Gongoozled, two nights of poetry that reminded me the art form is still changing and evolving, and the wonderfully eclectic Dan Simpson has certainly kept things lively at the office. But the undeniable majority of my time has been spent at this computer. And that’s such a relief.

Spoken Word is at a very interesting point in its history right now. Apples and Snakes is over 30 years old. John Cooper Clarke and Kate Tempest are practically household names now – this art form that we’ve all tried so hard to build appears, at least for now, to be sticking around. More than that, it’s growing. New generations of artists, like those of the Early Doors and Cannon Hill Collectives, are starting to push what can be done with poetry, and the questions being asked are no longer about whether this can function as an industry, but how we can sustain this growth and keep shaping spoken word into something that can effectively provide a living for people.

Apples and Snakes has been finding ways to answer those questions for over 30 years now – and not with magic, just with passionate people working to achieve something they believe in. Coming to that realisation has been the best part of this week, for me, and it’s left me feeling very optimistic about the future. So thanks, Apples, for showing me the way to keep Spoken Word growing for another thirty years, and more.

Carl.

Oh, and this is me performing some poetry, if you want to see that. Performed this poem at Jawdance, hope you enjoy it! (One swear word at the end!)

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These are extracts from February’s Snakebaskets. Sign up here to receive the whole message!

From all at Apples and Snakes
Did you catch When Words Collide on BBC1Extra on Sunday? It’s a documentary about spoken word, including Kate Tempest, Scroobius Pip, Polarbear and more! Plus, clips from the Shake The Dust Finals. Essential listening – catch up on iPlayer HERE before it disappears! Lastly, Apples and Snakes is delighted to announce that we’ve secured funding for core costs from the Garfield Weston Foundation, enabling us to continue the work we do in England.

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From West Midlands Coordinator Bohdan
HtO_175x200Hello all! Ah, yes, February. I have always felt this was an under-appreciated month: it gets fewer days than the others, and has a gloomy and cold reputation. Let’s see what we can do to change this! A quick look at the line-ups for the upcoming events (after the jump) should be enough to convince you. We have Malika Booker leading a Power Plant workshop on Saturday 2nd. We have M’sieu Dam, the French slam champion, performing at Hit the Ode on Thursday 28th.

And we have Kate Tempest and Patience Agbabi sharing lyrics and thoughts at Wordsmiths & Co. on Monday 18th, one of the most exciting double bills I’ve had the pleasure to announce in this newsletter. One important piece of news: you will note that there are no dates for Poets’ Place this month. Not to worry: we are close to finding a new venue for our fortnightly meetings while the Central Library closes in preparation for their big move to new premises. For up-to-the-minute news, consider joining the Poets’ place FB group here! facebook.com/placeforpoets

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From London Coordinator Russell
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Hello there. And in a packed programme this month, we bring you a whole host of verbal sweetmeats. There’s our Writing Room workshop for you under-26s on the 7th – this time featuring the dubtastic Jean ‘Binta’ Breeze. And, speaking of workshops, Steve Tasane will be presenting his perennially popular Performance Poetry Toolkit on 1st March. That’s open to everyone – even really really old people of, like, 27.

Jawdance will be [insert own dental pun] once again on Wednesday 27th, after a dynamic return in January. And elsewhere on the calendar, there are two shows featuring the poetic demimonde’s favourite speccy entertainer, John Hegley: the 13th at Lunch at Guy’s Hospital, and on the 28th at our new West London night Gongoozled at the Canal Cafe Theatre. Meanwhile, down in the badlands of Wimbledon, Alex Gwyther is presenting his new show Truce, which is great, and which you must catch before it’s snapped up by the sort of venues where you have to pay £5 for an ice-cream.

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From South East Coordinator Pete
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Hello, 451 in Southampton is coming up on Monday 18th and as well as featuring Joelle Taylor and Michael James Parker there will be local lad Stewart Taylor who gained the audience vote at January’s Archimedes Screw and a special performance by a group of young poets from the Princes Trust.

February is the shortest month, but it’s chock full of potential – look at the call out for poets to perform at Glastonbury 2013 in the opportunities section, and then there’s the chance to see rap-battling poet Mark Grist doing his one-man show in Southampton on 7th March (as well as entering the open poetry slam) and I mention that now because there’s currently an early-bird ticket offer available here. There’s also an emerging artist development programme starting up in the South East this month called One Way Ticket, in which writer Rosemary Harris will be mentoring a selection of young poets interested in developing shows for children.

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From South West Coordinator Gina
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This month starts with the amazing show: Pete The Temp Vs Climate Change plus some wonderful support acts. Wherever you reside in Devon, be sure to head to this multimedia extravaganza as it hits Exeter on the 4th and Barnstaple on the 5th with a bang.

I’m thrilled to have programmed a 2 night festival of spoken word and music, I am calling Shoot From The Lip! Taking place at the cozy and cool Bike Shed Theatre on the 22nd and 23rd of this month. Jam packed with regional and national spoken word artists and musicians you are sure to be entertained and astonished. See you there folks!

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From North East Coordinator Kirsten
big-heart-100x100We survived January! Brrr, well done us – and though it’s somehow still not spring yet, I have a lovely load of spoken word to warm your cockles this month. I’m very excited to bring you the truly lovely Richard Tyrone Jones, who has a Big Heart. His one-man show about his personal experience of heart failure is coming to the Lit & Phil the day after Valentine’s Day – just our little joke! Despite the serious subject matter, and the satisfyingly geeky science he explains, this is a funny and positive show featuring anecdote, poetry and animation. Well worth a night out, and the only spoken word show I know to be sponsored by the Wellcome Trust and reviewed by New Scientist.

Then of course we have Scratch Tyne on Sunday 17th, the free monthly helping of new poems and new poets eager for your feedback, this month featuring the launch of Material Magazine, so expect new faces and some music too. And finally we have Read Our Lips takes on Articulate on Wednesday 20th a special night of live lit and filmpoems at ARC, featuring Rowan McCabe, Jenni Pascoe, Allison Davies and Amir Darwish all talking about the purpose and future of poetry. Plus one lucky poet will win £100 in our Filmpoem Competition – those are being made on Saturday 2nd!

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These are extracts from February’s Snakebaskets. Apples and Snakes’ Snakebaskets are monthly newsletters tailored for each region we work in. Here you will find lots of exciting spoken word stuff and more about what we are up to in your area. Why not join our mailing list? Click here for more.

“just wanted to say thanks for one of the best poetry-info emails I’ve ever received. Hope to attend at least a couple of the events – brilliant!” London Snakebasket reader.

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These are extracts from January’s Snakebaskets. Sign up here to receive the whole message!

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From London Coordinator Russell
Gosh, can you believe it’s 2013? When I was a lad, there was a TV programme called Space: 1999, in which glamorous aliens underwent full-body molecular transformation in the time in takes you or me to make a cup of tea. A neat link, there, to The Rememberers, Kenny Baraka’s spectacular sci-fi spoken-word show. Imagine if you knew all the accumulated knowledge of your ancestors. (Think how full your head would be: never again would you be able to say ‘Sometimes I sits and thinks, and sometimes I just sits.’). Imagine a streetwise New York storyteller projecting you into a future where such stuff is not only reality, but the very key to Earth’s survival. Stop imagining, and get yourself down – deep down – to The Old Vic Tunnels, London’s artiest catacombs between 15 – 18 January.

Who turned up for Jawdance in December? Y’ daft wazzock – that was Boxing Day. It returns to Rich Mix on Wednesday 23 January, with more open-mic slots than you can shake a mixed metaphor at. But you still have to arrive early to get one. Oh, and to help the bairns over their post-Christmas comedown, StoryCraft is back on Monday 21st. Any feedback, email me at the usual address, with ‘Space: 1999 – factual inaccuracies’ as the subject line.

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From West Midlands Coordinator Bohdan
Hello all! Welcome to the new year. See any changes? Broken any resolutions? Me, I’m looking forward to what promises to be another great year for poetry, whatever the world at large might decide to throw at us. Power Plant continues on its mission to turn us all into consummate poetry pros, this time with Tim Wills addressing the seemingly unanswerable question on Saturday 12th: how does one make a living as a poet? I expect this one to be pretty crowded, so book your (free!) place early.

The world’s first live poetry chat show, Wordsmiths & Co., has been booked for another run of three fantastic nights of poetry, and we dive straight in with a show on Monday 21st featuring Inua Ellams, Jess Green, Ruth Larbey and Chris McCabe. And trust me, we have more incredible poets lined up. Hit the Ode returns from its brief hibernation on Thursday 31st, with Brummie-as-can-be Al Hutchins, the wonderful Rosy Carrick, and Ireland’s own reluctant bard, Stephen James Smith, and the usual open mic slots and shenanigans.

I can now reveal that in March, we will launching a new series of events in collaboration with Write Down Speak Up Level Up! A special evening of poetry aimed at younger people, a place where they can listen to top poets from around the country and showcase their own writing and performance skills. Much more to come on this very, very soon – watch this space! And that’s just the tip of the iceberg…

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From South East Coordinator Pete
Hello, 2013 is upon us, an auspiciously good year for poetry methinks, but 2012 went out with a double bang as first Big Talk at the Tom Thumb Theatre in Margate drew it’s biggest audience to see Adam Kammerling and Paula Varjack, plus a very high standard open mic. Then at 451 in Southampton we saw Tim Clare, Katie Bonna and plenty of exciting new-to-451 voices fill a rapt audience with poetic joy.

Big Talk coming up on Friday 25 January witnesses the arrival in the South East of Mark Gwynne Jones from the North West, bringing a performance style that will probably burst out of the Tom Thumb and spill onto the Margate seafront. It’ll be well worth the journey. And don’t forget Archimedes Screw at The Art House in Southampton on Friday 11 January, where Rhian Edwards will be headlining and YOU get to vote on which local poet appears at February’s 451. See you there.

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From South West Coordinator Gina
Happy New Year my spoken word lovelies, January 2013 sees Apples and Snakes South West emerged in stage 1 of Word Play in Somerset. The project known as ‘maybe it’s…,’ will begin with the brilliant Rob Gee’s master-class on mental health and will help support our fantastic lead poets and shadows on their journey. Find out more at Take Art. FORKED will be back on Thursday 17 January to dazzle, demand and deliver you from post festive hangovers. The line- up is tasty, fresh and packed full of flavour! Get those tickets today and I’ll see you there forkedites!
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From North East Coordinator Kirsten

Hooray, it’s a shiny new year to play with! LOTS going on, we’re hitting the ground running – if you missed Simon Mole’s brilliant show Indiana Jones and the Extra Chair at Live last November, you can catch it again at ARC on  Tuesday 29 January, with a new supporting cast of young writers bringing you their unique takes on the highs and lows of families and food. Come and enjoy a meal with the show, and find out why every family meal needs a hero… The very next night, on Wednesday 30 January, we have a special guest at the fabulous Trashed Organ – double Farrago Slam champ Martin Daws will bring you musicality and lyricism as he explore life, nature, and who the hell we think we are anyway!

Plus as ever we will be bringing you the new poets and new poems of Tyneside at our monthly Scratch Club on Sunday 20 January, now with open slots for acoustic singer-songwriters to try out their work – free, fun, informal and open to all, so why not join us? EARLY HEADS-UP – we will be running our last ever 24-Hour FilmPoem Challenge on Saturday 2 February in Stockton – a must for anyone wanting to enter our superb filmpoem competition…

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These are extracts from January’s Snakebaskets. Apples and Snakes’ Snakebaskets are monthly newsletters tailored for each region we work in. Here you will find lots of exciting spoken word stuff and more about what we are up to in your area. Why not join our mailing list? Click here for more.

“just wanted to say thanks for one of the best poetry-info emails I’ve ever received. Hope to attend at least a couple of the events – brilliant!” London Snakebasket reader.

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This is an extract from November’s London Snakebasket, to view the full version, click here.

Well, November sees us celebrating our 30th anniversary in style, with thirty nationwide events in thirty days and a plethora of posts on the blog from top notch poets – poets like Michael Rosen! And what does it mean for us as an organisation: will we start behaving like the characters from Thirtysomething – constantly declaring our love for each other and weeping for no adequately explored reason? Yep, that sounds about right.

Anyway, amongst other gems this month: Hannah Silva brings her one-woman political play on words to Oval House for a goodly run of dates; we have the latest The Word’s A Stage, squealing to a halt outside its new home, The Gallery Café; Jawdance will be clacking its canine castanets again on the fourth Wednesday; and watch out for some of the Artist Masterclasses and workshops we’ve got dotted about. More on all this below.

Oh, and if anybody from Out Bar Squeek – the band who played at our first ever show – is reading this, please get in touch.

Ciao!

Russell Thompson
Programme Coordinator for London

This is an extract from November’s London Snakebasket, to view the full version, click here.

Apples and Snakes’ Snakebaskets are monthly newsletters tailored for each region we work in. Here you will find lots of exciting poetry stuff and more about what we are up to in your area. Why not join our e.mailing list? Click here for more.

“just wanted to say thanks for one of the best poetry-info emails I’ve ever received. Hope to attend at least a couple of the events – brilliant!” London Snakebasket reader.

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This is an extract from October’s London Snakebasket, to view the full version, click here.

Welcome to the all-new, streamlined, altogether snakier Snakebasket. Fewer words to wade through. How ironic. Isn’t wading through words what we’re all about?

So, in a nutshell, October turns to SPIN on the 6th at Tara Arts before we team up with Renaissance One for a Creative Salon at Rich Mix – that’s on the 9th. Then we’re presenting Richard Tyrone Jones’ Big Heart, a fun-to-be-at show about heart failure, on the 10th at The Albany. Jawdance will reopen its maws a fortnight later at – you guessed it – Rich Mix.

There’ll also be a pop-up A&S performance on the evening of Wednesday 17 October at Greenwich’s newest, quirkiest space, the MVMNT Café. Watch our site for more! Plus, a poetry competition we’re running with Original Writing UK – all details below.

November sees a whole bagful of prime poetic activities marking our 30th anniversary – all culminating with that big John Cooper Clarke shindig on 1 December. There are still tickets available for that one, but when we say ‘book now’, we mean it in a very real sense.

You want more? Read (and surf) on…

Russell Thompson
Programme Coordinator for London

This is an extract from October’s London Snakebasket, to view the full version, click here.

Apples and Snakes’ Snakebaskets are monthly newsletters tailored for each region we work in. Here you will find lots of exciting poetry stuff and more about what we are up to in your area. Why not join our e.mailing list? Click here for more.

“just wanted to say thanks for one of the best poetry-info emails I’ve ever received. Hope to attend at least a couple of the events – brilliant!” London Snakebasket reader.

 

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