Tag Archives: Bob Holman

Poetry Competition tribute for William McGonagall

31 Jul

William McGonagall, photo from Scotia Heritage

The StAnza 2011 slam was made memorable by MC Bob Holman, a huge William McGonagall fan, reciting McGonagall’s most famous poem in sections to punctuate the proceedings, and inviting the audience to join in for the final verse.  Was this perhaps the world’s first mass McGonagall reading?

This year is the 110th anniversary of the death of Dundee’s famous bard, often acclaimed as the world’s worst poet, and a poetry tribute competition, Memories of McGonagall, is being held to mark it. For those who fancy composing their own McGonagall-esque verses, there is now only one month until the closing date on 1st September.

The competition is open to unpublished poets of all ages and free to enter. The challenge is to write a poem in the style of the bard on any subject. The final judging session  will be filmed by Dundee internet news channel at Dundee Literary Festival, 28th October. Apart from fame and fortune, the prizes include a biography by journalist Norman Watson and a 1/4 stone of sausages. The entries will be judged by popular opinion with the judges, who include Sheena Wellington, declaring the overall winner.

At a second event, Dundee Leisure and Communities will be hosting a November reading and have agreed to accept the winning entry into the city’s historic McGonagall Collection. In all, this is a fun, free and wonderful opportunity for an unpublished poet.
Further details can be found on Scotia Heritage on Facebook or at the Scotia Heritage website.

Thanks to those who entered

11 Jul

Bob Holman at the 2011 StAnza Slam
Photo by Long Nguyen

StAnza was delighted by the volume of entries for our inaugural Digital Slam, and the judges who chose the shortlist were very impressed by the quality and diversity of what was submitted and delighted to discover so many excellent performers out there.

Our congratulations to those who made the cut (look out for the shortlist on Friday), and commiserations to those who didn’t – better luck next time!

As it was so hard for the judges to narrow it down to this shortlist of twelve, after the winner is announced, we plan to post links to the entries which just didn’t make the shortlist, so everyone else will have the chance to enjoy them as well.

StAnza tickets on sale next week

1 Jan

Festive greetings from StAnza and all best wishes for 2011.

Our programme for March has grown considerably since it went online a month ago. There is now a parcel of additional events and a few changes elsewhere, so do check it out http://www.stanzapoetry.org/2011/eventsdate.php and let us know what you think.

The printed brochure will be available very soon and tickets go on general sale on Tuesday 11th January: online, by phone or in person at the Box Office in St Andrews. You will note we have kept our prices affordable, plus there are early bird and bulk purchase discounts available too, and numerous free and unticketed events on offer.

There is too much happening to summarise it all here – 87 events, exhibitions, installations and films – but look out for our Gaelic focus and Australian focus, and for a range of Poetry Cafe events as part of Scotland’s Land of Food and Drink. For those who like to join in, our Saturday night Slam will have a New York vibe this year and, by popular demand, we’ve got a new early evening event – for those who prefer a mellow open mic experience.  More on all of this shortly, but meantime why not take advantage of the holidays to check out the updated programme online here http://www.stanzapoetry.org/2011/events.php.

Bob Holman

StAnza’s programme is now online!

9 Dec

If you are snowed in and have time to surf, take a look at StAnza’s programme for 2011 which has just gone online at www.stanzapoetry.org

The plethora of poets are due to appear at the festival at the Byre Theatre (left) and other venues in St Andrews, 16-20 March. The line-up is one of the most intriguing yet. Just confirmed is slam legend Bob Holman, who made this brand of performance poetry a force to be reckoned with. Fellow New Yorker Marilyn Hacker is also making a rare visit to Scotland. These transatlantic poets will be joining talents from closer to home: Ciaran Carson: the acclaimed poet from Northern Ireland. Julia Donaldson: the hugely popular children’s author and poet, of Gruffalo fame, who will be heading up the festival’s Children’s Programme and Douglas Dunn, Scotland’s most eminent poet. Recent T. S. Eliot Prize winner Philip Gross has also just been added to the list.

More names to plan your visit to StAnza around are Paul Farley, Selima Hill, Yang Lian, Carrie Etter and Fiona Sampson. Scotland’s voices include John Burnside, Stewart Conn, Helena Nelson, Rab Wilson, Hugh MacMillan and Tom Pow.

Among the international voices are Italy’s Antonella Anedda, Iraqi poet, Adnan al- Sayegh, Belgium’s sound and visual poetry group Krikri, and poets from Georgia and Australia. We’ll be posting more entries about the line-up over the next few months.

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