StAnza: Scotland's International Poetry Festival is famous for its liveliness, friendliness and wide range of events, centred on poetry, but embracing all the arts. The festival, which takes place at St Andrews from 14-18 March, offers more than 90 events, from centre stage readings to high octane performances, slams and open mics, jazz, films, workshops, plus poetry related art exhibitions, installations and films, all of which explore the relationship between poetry and other art forms. And the festival gets off to a musical start on our opening night with actor David Hayman and the Dave Batchelor Quintet - whose line-up includes poet Don Paterson -in ‘Kind of Larkin', celebrating Philip Larkin's love of jazz.
Over 60 poets will be taking part in this year's StAnza, including Kathleen Jamie, Jackie Kay, Christopher Reid, Matthew Hollis, Lavinia Greenlaw, Michael Symmons Roberts, Grace Nichols, Joe Dunthorne, USA poets Kwame Dawes and Chase Twichell, and poets from the Republic of Macedonia, Sweden, Poland, South Africa and Palestine.The festival has two themes: The Image, which explores poetry's relationship with film, visual art and photography,and Poetry by Degrees, which highlights poetry in education and ushers in a host of workshops and inspire sessions to aid the creative process.
StAnza's Poetry Café strand features the best performance poets on the circuit. Things are also taking a decidedly dramatic turn, with twogroundbreaking poetry plays: TV's Karen Dunbar in A Drunk Woman looks at a Thistle and poet Martin Figura's hauntingly tragic but funny Whistle.These are just some of the events celebrating the power ofpoetry on stage.
The festival also takes up the more avant-garde aspects of poetry. There will be a highly original response to Hitchcock's famous chiller in the show PsychoPoetica. Acclaimed Dutch poet and composer Rozalie Hirs will present live versions of the electroacoustic compositions and texts on her recent CD ‘Pulsars'. This is the first performance in Scotland by Hirs - her music has been described by one critic as having "a hint of hard-hitting Dutch Minimalism".
All this plus book and pamphlet launches, a poets market for publishers and poetry presses, open mics, the StAnza Slam, talks, walks, fabulous food and drink and the chance to enjoy the warm and welcoming atmosphere that is StAnza.
Tickets are now on sale. For programme and booking details visit our website.