THE LIFE CHANGING POWER OF DISABILITY ARTS BY LISETTE AUTON

I am a writer, a poet, an actor and activist, a spoken word performer, a creative practitioner and facilitator, a feminist, a believer in human rights and kindness. I campaign and yell from roof tops. I decried the cuts and austerity which widened and widens the gap between haves and have nots to unassailable suicide…

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INDEPENDENT PUBLISHING AND THE SMALL PRESS REVOLUTION BY KIT RAYNE

Poetry has been and still is a revolution.  What else but revolution would cause such a drastic shift in a scene? A scene which is putting big name publishers to one side, more and more often choosing instead to support the small press, the independent, the noble amateur poet. My problem with saying revolution is…

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Being an Artist in Residence for SPINE 2018: Amina Jama

“When I grow up, I want to be a Superhero Bubble-gum Trapper, and nobody can tell me otherwise” – Year 3 student I have always lived, studied and loved East London. For me, it is the single place on this island that I would ever consider home. I can easily distribute directions, name bus routes…

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REDEMPTION SONGS AND ALTERNATIVE ANTHEMS: THE UNSOUND BARRIER BETWEEN POETRY AND MUSIC BY KIBRIYA MEHRBAN

If one of the main objectives of reading and writing poetry is to evoke emotion, then it’s no surprise that it would find a natural bedfellow in music. From bards of old to today’s most popular rappers, the intersections between music and poetry can be seen throughout history. For performance poetry, this is particularly significant….

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CROSS DRESSING AND FLUID IDENTITIES: FITTING BY MATT MILLER

For this blog, rather than talk about the creative process of making, I wanted to talk about my experience of exploring cross dressing. It has, in many ways been a slow process of small steps. I remember being in clothes shop, Fatface in about 2014, not long back in Newcastle after graduating from Nottingham University,…

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Silence, how to work with Historical texts: Rachel Rose Reid

For the last few months, I’ve been collaborating with a brilliant spoken word artist from Cornwall, whose work is timeless, full of rage, rhyme and satire. Their name is Heldris, and we have to work remotely because they’ve been dead for 700 years. Roman de Silence is Heldris’ epic 13th Century adventure which was lost…

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Making a Scene by Kym Deyn

Creating a Spoken Word Community I like to joke sometimes that “Durham University Poetry Slam Team” sounds like an oxymoron. Durham Uni, as the little sibling of Oxford and Cambridge, has the same amount of ambition squashed into its over-priced and falling apart college accommodation and plays host to an inferiority complex I’ve occasionally witnessed…

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There’s No Last Place by Sophie Sparham

The simple fact we often forget Success. The word has a different meaning to different people. In the poetry world, success can take shape in a number of different forms. To some people it’s getting up on stage and performing in front of a crowd, to others, it’s releasing their first collection. Some poets are…

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Photo by Sabiheh Awanzai

Hunting in the Undergrowth: Oakley Flanagan

I came across a piece of social-history by mistake. I’d been researching the history of Battersea for Apples and Snakes’ show Rallying Cry when I discovered that Battersea Park used to be a notorious cruising ground for gay men & even as late as the 90s there were clashes with the queer community & the…

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Photo by Sabiheh Awanzai

The Shanachie: Oakley Flanagan

Picking up where my grand-mother left off Protest as we know it seems to be a vital & a necessary endeavour in the times in which we live for people to see they are not alone, further debate & instigate change. There is however something seemingly impervious about the singular vision it must require to…

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Accessibility and Awareness: Pete Hunter

Pete Hunter, Apples and Snakes’ South East Producer, shares advice to help ensure your spoken word night is inclusive and accessible. Spoken word is, or should be, for everyone. Whether an organiser or a performer, you have the responsibility of taking appropriate steps to make sure that the event is as accessible to as many…

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The Power of Music: Aoife Mannix

‘The Walking Shadows’ is the first libretto I’ve ever written.  It was performed at St Martin in the Fields on October 30th 2018 alongside Mozart’s Requiem, one of my favourite pieces of music.  It was composed byStephen McNeff to mark the hundredth anniversary of the First World War. ‘For me, the sound of the words…

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Photo by Suzi Corker

Kenny Baraka: Lessons Learnt with the Young Makers

Lessons Learnt with the Young Makers Writer, performer, and facilitator Kenny Baraka looks back on our recent project with Young Makers’ Agency in Downham, Lewisham. Throughout this year-long project, Funded by Phoenix Housing, Kenny helped develop a group of aspiring lyricists and MCs. While doing the quarterly “spring” cleaning of my laptop (you know: sifting…

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Poems from SPINE 2018: Erin Bolens

As part of SPINE Festival 2018 I led workshops in nine libraries across London with children aged seven to eleven. We explored the themes of ‘home’ and ‘belonging’ in these sessions. In each session we looked at what ‘home’ means, where and when you can feel at home and our sensory responses to the concept….

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Hansika Jethani: Reflections on Rallying Cry

In October 2018, Apples and Snakes took over Battersea Arts Centre, bringing together an incredible group of established and emerging artists for Rallying Cry, an immersive spoken word show directed by Rob Watt. We’re extremely grateful to theErnest Hecht Charitable Foundation for supporting the project and enabling us to present the Ernest Hecht Award for…

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