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Entry: £5/£4

Open Mic Event


London's premier open mic night. Come and sign up between 6 and 7pm to be in the line up. Hosted by Niall O'Sullivan

Readers sign up via email from a week before to 2pm on the day of the event) or at the venue from 6.45pm-7.15pm

Time: 7:30pm

VenueThumbNail - The Betsy Trotwood

The Betsy Trotwood

56 Farringdon Road, London, EC1R 3BL, GB

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Weekly Event (Usually held every Tuesday)

Note: Write Out Loud does its best to ensure the accuracy of event listings but can accept no liability or responsibility if it's just plain wrong.

Reviews for Poetry Unplugged

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Greg Freeman

Wed 14th Nov 2012 09:10

To the Poetry Cafe on a sudden whim, because my shift had ended earlier than usual. Arrived there to find the basement so crowded the overflow audience was camped out all the way up the stairs. The venue in Covent Garden’s Betterton Street is undoubtedly cramped, and sweaty. Is it becoming a victim of its own success, and of the burgeoning popularity of poetry? No matter. The girl at the bar assured me that I’d be able to get a seat after the break and so I decided to linger on the ground floor and see how things panned out after a glass or two of red wine, content at first to inspect the artwork and poems of Maggie Butt’s collection about imagined, 21st century patron saints that was unveiled there last week. There is her saint of rank outsiders, for instance:

“Remember Cassius and Sonny,
Sunderland and Leeds, Foinavon,
a hundred to one. Go on, try”

This is, of course, a fine maxim for any budding poet. I fell into conversation with Peter Ebsworth, editor of London’s South Bank Poetry magazine, who was also stranded on the ground floor, even though he had been booked in to read, and eventually had to clamber down past the bodies on the stairs when his name was called. (By happy coincidence Peter is publishing a poem of mine in the next magazine, a snip at £3.50, in spring 2013). At half-time I seized my chance, nipped downstairs, and managed to secure a seat in the back row. What to say about the second half? The audience was still packed, the atmosphere relaxed and happy, the performers – many of them “Poetry Unplugged virgins” - dropping in to read from places such as Estonia and California. Host Niall O’Sullivan was rigorous but fair in his timekeeping, cutting a few poets off in their prime, and providing quick-fire banter in between. The virgins acquitted themselves very well, on the whole. The audience departed smiling, stimulated, and buzzing.

Review is about Poetry Unplugged on 13 Nov 2012 (event)

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