Sunday, November 09, 2008

Hot on the heels of November 5th - and how celebratory those fireworks felt this year - came the verbal sparklers of Madabout Words night. Over 60 people came along to hear thirteen local writer/performers in a cabaret of poetry, prose, drama, and lyrics.

I'd love to give a full and impartial review but as I organised it I can't so I'll just say to fiction writers Debby Holt, Magnus Nelson, Rosie Jackson & Niamh Ferguson; to poets David Sollors, Gordon Graft, Rose Flint, & Caleb Parkin; to dramatists Alison Clink and Rosie Finnegan, and to musicians Howard Vause & PJ Leonard: Darlings you were wonderful and I mean that most sincerely. And many thanks to all who supported us.

As one performer said, for us it's an opportunity to play to a perfectly listening audience, and "it is something that actually seems to matter to people - very lovely - this sort of thing is important isn't it?"
I certainly believe so.

Same yet different, another evening of spoken word at the launch of a new book from Peter Please: CLATTINGER An Alphabet of Signs from Nature, a quirky look at a Wiltshire wildflower meadow and site of special scientific interest. The Georgian premises of the Bath Royal Literary and Scientific Society contrast and blend graciously with imagery of snakeshead fritillaries and damselflies. Unusually for an author launch, this gentle and charming event was designed as a team effort, with musical accompaniments and contributions from several other writers including a striking poem from cover artist Sean Borodale. Clattinger is an unusual book too, a hi-tech production finished by hand; Peter Please sewed them all himself, pinching the spines in the traditional manner of 19th Century craftsmen. "We are the farmers' markets in a supermarket world," I like to tell writer friends; Peter Please wants to be slow-simmered broth in a fast food planet. You can find out more here.

Footnote to last week's epic event in America: Jeremy Paxman to Dizzee Rascal "Mr Rascal, could you see this happening in Britain?" "If you believe you can achieve, innit?" "Do you believe in political parties in Britain?" "Yeah, they exist." Perfect.

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