The second Write to Speak Larkin25 on 22nd November was another success. The small team that organize these nights prove yet again that you don't need committees, event management and marketing teams to get things done.
This evening, 24th November, Write to Speak invited a poetry collective from the North East to Hull to perform alongside their own workshop poets.
The visitors perform under the name 10 x 10 which refers to the number of poets and the length of time each is allocated to perform (Ten poets, ten minutes each).
Tonight, Master of Ceremonies duty is given over to Jeff Price; the man behind 10 x 10. He promised a night of verse with a variety of poetic and performance styles. He opened with a piece extolling the virtues of the string vest followed by one about a poet's apparent prowess in the sack.
In a first for Write to Speak, Newcastle poet Simma employed an iPad instead of loose sheaves or a well thumbed notebook.
He compared and contrasted the poetry world with that of a singer songwriter; both of which he calls home.
Beverley's John Fewings came next and his set got me thinking: Pole Position, a punning title, he read with a Polish accent. More unusual accents were to follow from 10 x 10 with West Indian, American and African voices employed, adding layers of character to the verse.
Highlights of these international flavours were the Rastafari wisemen in the nativity themed Shirley Temple Jesus and the sharp eyed reporting of an African journo in the North.
There was a line by Amanda Baker; '... tangles of social spaghetti', that reflected the multicultural mix perfectly.
Our poets voices were sandwiched between the visiting poets. Gary Clark gave us Undeserving Heroes, filled with poignant observation; Julie Corbett sculpted poetry from tiny moments of the day with Café Mocha .
The recently published Mike Watts brought us a tale about a girl with a thing for firemen and hoax calling.
'What is it about his poems?' I'm thinking, as he delivers them for the umpteenth time, never missing a beat, word perfect ... it's because he writes the way he speaks, I note down.
That strong, familiar Hull accent that we have been celebrating, holding up to the light and examining throughout the Larkin Anniversary and throughout thisisUll.com.
It's true that 10 x 10 had their fair share of local vernacular which they too were eager to share with the Hull ones. What made 10 x 10 stand out, more memorable maybe, were those who chose a different tongue in which to read. Maybe Write to Speak will go on to create an exotic poetry platter of its own. Who knows?
Many of the poems tonight can be seen on thisisUll.com or by way of the new iPhone and iPad apps
developed by thisisull; iPoetry and Larkin25.
Reviews, Theatre Larkin25 - Write to Speak presents: They f*** you up... at Hull Truck - Monday 22nd November 2010 By Michelle Dee. Photographs courtesy Cilla Wykes
In this current climate of Arts funding cuts and uncertain futures the only thing to do is go out there and make things happen. Tonight's Write To Speak performances were the result of such an approach.
All the writers tonight have taken advantage of the poetry writing and performance workshops hosted by Joe Hakim and Mike Watts from Write To Speak in conjunction with thisisUll.comRead more...
Reviews, Theatre Tango Passion at New Theatre, Hull - Friday 29th October 2010 By Melanie Fullard
This show has played to standing ovations on world famous stages in places like Berlin, Paris, Moscow, Rome, Broadway. How the hell did they manage to land here - wrong turn?
Well, whatever happened, we are so glad they came. For one night only, Hull became a hotbed of lust in a small theatre, not far from British Home Stores.
A cast of 30 dancers and musicians
Reviews, Arts - Write to Speak - The Petty Concerns of Luke Wright and Helen Mort at Hull Truck - Wednesday 20th October 2010 By Mark Walmsley
Hull Truck 0 - Luke Wright 30.If this had been the cricketer Luke Wright, you would be forgiven for thinking that the headline was a cricket score result between the Hull Truck cricket team and the solitary England Batsman but on this occasion it was worse news.
On his second visit in 2 years to the Hull Truck Theatre, Luke Wright, one of Britain's leading performance poets played to a house of around just 30 people.
Reviews, Arts - 1st September 2010 - Write to Speak Featuring Ian McMillan - Talking Myself Home By Jess Fullard age 16
This poetry thing's alright!
Right, me auntie asked me to go to this poetry thing - her mate couldn't go so I sez I wud (only coz she was gunna buy me a beer!).
I woz a bit worried it might be all, 'thee, thou' stuff. Am onny 16 an Eminem is the most famous poet I know!
Anyhow we goes in an it turnz out to be o'right, you know. I woz real surprised. Mike Watts and Joe Hakim did their poems and these woz real good.
Reviews, Arts - Write to Speak featuring Dennis Wild at The Adelphi Club - Thursday 5th August 2010 By Melanie Pearce
The Write to Speak group has become an extended family and like all families they like to get together for a bit of a do.
The chosen venue is the local Adelphi Club - round at mad Uncle Paul's house. Like any mad uncle's house, it's small, messy and always full of waifs and strays. You certainly wouldn't eat there but its home all the same.
Reviews, Books - Old City, New Rumours - Edited by Ian Gregson and Carol Rumens Reviewed by Tim Roux
In Invisible Cities, Italo Calvino, or rather his character, Marco Polo, declares that a port approached from the sea is of a very different character from the same port as approached from the land.
Being brought up in Hull in the 1950s and 1960s, I remember that you could drive into Hull down the Anlaby Road and have no sense of entering anything other than yet another Northern industrial red-bricked city until you either drove onto one of the docks
Reviews, Arts - They F*** You Up - Spoken Word Workshop at Hull Truck By Julie Corbett
A steady stream of people went in to Hull Truck and climbed the stairs or took the lift to the first floor. We were all heading for Inter@ct - the space and the first Write to Speak Poetry workshop. A few Hello's but it was mainly a community of strangers.
Joe Hakim began by introducing himself, Mike Watts and Cilla (the editor of www.thisisUll.com . And gosh we the audience were all quiet and attentive.
Reviews, Films - Avatar - iMax Cinema, London By Michelle Dee
I'd seen the clips and a brief 'making of' documentary on Film 2010 but nothing prepared me for the complete immersion into James Cameron's spectacular vision. I wasn't sure how I'd get on with the whole 3D thing, I worried it wouldn't work for me; how wrong was I.
London's iMax cinema on the south bank is huge and was apparently sold out that day although there were a number of
Reviews, Books - Missio by Tim Roux Reviewed by Clive Ashman
Thirty-six years ago, at the height of the West's Cold War with the then Soviet Union, a Hull fishing trawler called The Gaul and its thirty-six crew suddenly disappeared in the freezing waters of the Barents Sea, off the cost of Norway. Hundreds of miles from home, and hundreds of feet down, the fate of the missing vessel and its lost crew continued to haunt their grieving relatives and the whole City of Hull for the next thirty years (and Stevie Francis).
Reviews, Books - Triple Trawler Fiction - Clinging to the Wreckage Reviewed by Tim Roux
By the 1960s, there was still a significant deep sea trawler fleet fishing out of Hull but only three literary figures had as yet been associated with the city: Andrew Marvell, a seventeenth century politician and poet, Winifred Holtby, author of South Riding, and Stevie Smith, a poet and novelist whose most famous line is 'not waving but drowning'.
Reviews, Arts - Contents May Vary at Red Gallery in Hull Contemporary Art Continues Despite the Big Freeze By Michelle Dee. Photographs courtesy Andrew Quinn
While the city of Hull struggled against the adverse weather conditions on Friday 8th January and people tried in vain to get home after many businesses were closed earlier than usual, a group of dedicated contemporary artists were preparing for the opening night of Contents May Vary at Red Gallery in the city.
Battling against all odds, the show opened on time just minutes
Reviews, Books - Seers by Karen Wolfe Reviewed by Tim Roux
Ever since the publication of The Philosopher's Stone, I have been troubled by a niggling concern. It doesn't keep me awake at night but I do regularly accost strangers and ask them, 'Whatever happened to Harry Potter's grandparents?'
Harry Potter was a baby when his parents were killed. His parents look like they were in their twenties, max. thirties.
Reviews, Books - Broken Dreams by Nick Quantrill Reviewed by Tim Roux
Over the last couple of years, Nick Quantrill has made an enviable reputation for himself as a highly accomplished true-to-the-gospels (of St. Elmore Leonard and St. Raymond Chandler) crime fiction writer who reliably delivers precisely crafted plots, authentic hardboiled dialogue and classic PI fisticuffs action.
His tales are suffused with an atmosphere of compounding tension