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Staple Film-Poems Night at Phoenix Square

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Along with Word! – the East Midlands’ longest-running spoken word night – last Tuesday evening saw four poets from Staple’s film themed issue performing their work with visuals by Word! resident film-maker Keith Allott in the cinema surroundings of Phoenix Square in Leicester. Lydia Towsey performed ‘Lovers at a Station’ to an animated ’score’ of coloured bars echoing the sound of Debussy’s ‘Clair de Lune’, and ‘The Other Women’ to a mini-drama of Sainsbury’s assistants watched over by a suspicious partner, Jayne Stanton presented ‘The Cab Door Closes’ to scenes of a woman leaving a mysterious scene, and Maria Taylor read ‘The Carnival of Souls’ as a figure borrowed from Hideo Nakata’s ‘The Ring’ crept along a spookily-lit Leicester alleyway. Pam Thompson’s ‘Backstory’ saw the author turning the pages of a book in a luminous cloud-scape, while some of those who had participated in a workshop with Pam and Keith Allott  earlier that afternoon read from their own responses to the night’s cinematic theme. All these poems can be found in the latest issue of Staple, along with a bonus poem on film-noir by Pam Thompson and excerpts from Mark Stevenson (The Ghost Poet’s)  eerie tale about a narrator and a spectral boy, a zebra and some sinister birds…

If all that wasn’t enough, the night also saw a wonderful collection of open mic contributions, including some inspired use of film by Steven Silverman, Clive Ward, Bobba Bennett, Oscar Frank and others, while those reading unaccompanied included Kathy Bell on stage illusionists, Robin Vaughan Williams on the middle managers behind a myriad of workplace surveillance cameras and Mark Goodwin on a hypothetical fight between James Bond and Lord Byron that doesn’t turn out quite as expected. The printed issues are due to be delivered any moment (literally!) so while you’re waiting, here are some pictures from the Phoenix Square session to keep you going until the mailout is done, hopefully at some point during this week!

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For more on Word! (next event is Tuesday 5 October at The Y Theatre, with Jean Binta Breeze) go to the Word! website.

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