Tuesday, 7 August 2012

An upcoming feast of poetry

THE Festival of Spirituality and Peace is all about diversity, and this is nowhere represented better than by this year's poetry line-up.

Ranging from spirituality to comedy, from performance poetry to workshops, from the thirteenth century to the present day, we have poetic events from different spiritual and cultural backgrounds, from different points in history - but all with the same spirit of peace and diversity.

Two rather wise men from the east 
 Would really not mind in the least 
 If you joined them one evening 
 For spiritual seasoning 
 With poems that make up a feast.

The poetry begins tomorrow (Tuesday August 7th) with Two Wings to Fly, a night of all-new poetry by Mark Pratt and Jock Stein. This is not only their first time performing at the festival, but their first time performing before an audience - come along to show your support and hear some original poetry.

Come Wednesday, Richard Medrington and Elspeth Murray, two of Scotland's most entertaining performance poets, will be doing their new show, The Craic Where the Light Gets In!

A mixture of comedy and spirituality, all underpinned by excellent wordplay, Medrington and Murray have a delightful and unforgettable dynamic. With a mixture of their own and other's poetry and musical guests handpicked from the very best of Edinburgh's Festival talent, this is sure to be a poetry highlight!

Over the course of August, there will be not one but three events showcasing the poetry of thirteenth century Islamic writer Jelaludin Rumi!

On Sunday August 19th Duncan Mackintosh will be performing Rumi's poetry, bringing it to life in Voice of the Heart: An Introduction To The Life, Poetry And Stories Of Rumi.

This will be followed by Scattering Stars Like Dust: An Evening with Rumi, a second show on the 22nd and 24th of August with yet more of the poetry and tales of Rumi.

Finally, on Saturday August 25th, Duncan Mackintosh will be leading a Rumi-inspired workshop, The Breeze at Dawn. Be inspired by the works of Rumi and your own experience to expand your creative development!

The works of Rumi appeal to humankind's universality of spirit and have been described as moving and even transforming. Whether you're a long-time lover of Rumi or are completely new to his works, these will be poetry events like no other!

For some contrast, experience contemporary poetry at its best!

On August 20th, StAnza, Scotland's International Poetry Festival, will be performing a series of highlights in their StAnza Showcase. A series of acclaimed poets from recent festivals will return to perform their work for FoSP in what promises to be a diverse and thoroughly Scottish evening.

For yet more diversity, late in the festival there will be a series of poetry readings in the cosy, exotic setting of the Persian Tent!

Led by M.C. Stephanie Green, Poetry in the Persian Tent is headlined by poets Stewart Conn, Vicki Feaver, John Glenday, Jackie Kay, Liz Lochhead and Aonghas MacNeacail. Each session will be accompanied by music ranging from Gaelic songs to a capella.

Ideal for dedicated and casual poetry lovers alike, be sure to come early to visit the Persian Tent Cafe and get the full Persian experience!

Finally, on the last weekend of the festival Mairi Campbell and Em Strang will be performing their joint show Wolf at the Door, weaving together word and sound to create something entirely new.

A unique and powerful combination of music and poetry that exemplifies the collaborative spirit of the festival, this is the perfect way to any poetry-lover to wind down their festival experience!

These six events are just a selection of the poetic treats the Festival has to offer - check out our program for the full details of each of these shows and more! We hope you'll come to one of our poetry readings - until then, we leave you with the words of Rumi:

"Come, Come, whoever you are 
Wanderer, worshiper, lover of leaving,
 it doesn't matter... 
Come, yet again, come"


(c) Katie MacFadyen is a fourth year student of Classics at the university of Edinburgh, about to start a dissertation in Reception Studies: the study of how classics is and has been used in subsequent cultural contexts. She writes speculative fiction and theatre, film and book reviews. Her theatre reviews from the Fringe Festival 2011 can be found on thenewkid.co.uk and her general reviews can be found on her blog, somesuchlike.wordpress.com.

1 comment:

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