Sign up for our latest Spoken Sessions with Inua Ellams and Theresa Lola

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Poetry events are springing up in venues around the country. Strict social distancing measures are in place; some feature audience members wearing face coverings, others feature audience members praying it won’t drizzle on their beer garden. Either way, at long last, they’re starting to happen again.

That said, for various some people don’t feel ready to return yet, or simply aren’t able to due to circumstance. And so, the Covid silver lining of virtual poetry events continues to keep us going from the safety and comfort of our own homes!

 

The third of our Spoken Sessions will premiere on Thursday 8 July at 7pm UK time. Featuring live performances from Inua Ellams and Theresa Lola, it’ll be available exclusively to patrons of our new Patreon channel.

We’ve launched three tiers on the Patreon channel:

  1. £5 monthly– the standard subscription;
  2. £7 monthly - solidarity subscription for those happy to add a donation;
  3. A £3 subscription for any one of these:
  • those unable to afford the £5 tier, or
  • who donated to our fundraising campaign, or,
  • are Kirklees residents.

Proof is not required.

We also have three open mic slots on a first-come, first-served basis. To reserve a three-minute open mic slot, email matt@writeoutloud.net. We encourage applications from a diverse range of poets at all levels of their career.

If applying for the open mic, please note that we’ll be pre-recording this event over Zoom at 7pm on Monday 5 July – not to be confused with the broadcast date later that week! All you need to take part is a free Zoom account and a reliable internet connection.

 

As we continue to produce more content, we’ll introduce various levels of subscription on the Patreon channel. Greg Freeman reviewed the first batch of content on there, including the first Spoken Session with Kirsten Luckins and Will Harris, alongside our Caroline Bird masterclass and Saili Katebe workshop.

We’ve since added the Spoken Session with Ella Frears and Sean Wai Keung, as well as our editing masterclass with Anthony Anaxagorou.

Your subscriptions will help us to generate a steady source of income. Write Out Loud as a core service will never disappear behind a paywall, but by charging for bonus content such as our Patreon channel, we’ll be able to grow and offer even more to the poetry eco-system.

 

Born in Nigeria, Inua Ellams is a poet, playwright and performer, and a fellow of the Royal Society of Literature. Across his work, identity, displacement and destiny are recurring themes in which he also tries to mix the old with the new; traditional African storytelling with contemporary poetry. Inua's latest collection, The Actual, is a symphony of personal and political fury, a full-throated assault on empire and its legacies of racism, injustice, and toxic masculinity, written on his phone, in transit, between meetings, before falling asleep and just after waking. At its heart, his book confronts the absolutism and 'foolish machismo' of hero culture – from Perseus to Trump, from Batman to Boko Haram.

 

Theresa Lola is a British Nigerian poet and writer, who was the 2019–20 Young People’s Laureate for London. She was joint winner of the 2018 Brunel International African poetry prize and was shortlisted for the 2017 Bridport poetry prize. Her debut poetry collection In Search of Equilibrium (2018) about grief, faith and isolation is published by Nine Arches Press and was praised as “a glorious hymn to being alive and wounded” by Pascale Petit.

In April 2018 she was invited by the Mayor of London’s Office to read a commissioned poem at the unveiling of Millicent Fawcett’s statue. She has held poetry residencies at Wellcome Collection, St Paul’s Cathedral and Bethlem Museum of the Mind. She was featured in the September 2019 issue of British Vogue, recognised as one of the Forces for Change by guest editor, the Duchess of Sussex Meghan Markle.

 

The event will be hosted by Matt Abbott. Matt is a poet, educator, and activist from Wakefield. His début one-man show Two Little Ducks earned 5* reviews at Edinburgh Fringe 2017 and on a UK theatre tour in 2018. The show’s poems were published as his debut collection by Verve Poetry Press in 2018. Matt was a patron for the Foyle Young Poets of the Year Award in 2020.

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