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Bedford Events 2016

January – time to remind you of the roster of forthcoming events for 2016.

Ouse Muse will be back with its usual mix of open mic and guest poet(s). Usually the third Wednesday of the month, dates and guests for the 2016 first half

Jan 20th, Janet Sutherland

Feb 17th,  Julia Bird

Mar 16th, Steve Pottinger

Apr 20th, Gareth Farmer

May 18th, Anne Berkeley

June 22nd, Jonathan Totman and Fen Speak Poets

All these events will be downstairs at the Auction Room bar, 1 Duke St, Bedford, MK40 3HD, starting at 7.45pm. Please come and see us!

The week after our January Ouse Muse date the county finals of Poetry by Heart for both Bedfordshire and Hertfordshire will take place at the Quarry Theatre, 7pm (prompt) start. School champions from the two counties will compete to see who can provide the best poetry recitation on the night and go forward as county champions to the National Finals in Cambridge in March. The event is free to attend and features a guest reading by Daljit Nagra, who will present the winners with their prizes.

Following the success of BedSlam! 2015 we are going to bring the spirit of slam to the town again in 2016. There will be two mini-slams as part of the BedPop record shop on the 23rd April and the 12th November at The Lane bar. Let me know if you are interested in taking part, because the time frame is restricted and the format is (frankly) an experiment, the number of spaces for slam competitors will be quite limited at these two events. I’m still working on a full scale slam evening (provisionally and imaginatively titled BedSlam! 2016) but no date set as yet.

I am also going to be running some courses in 2016. On the 12th March as part of the BedPop Science Lab I’ll be running a scientifically-themed poetry writing session – details TBA. I’m also running a three week course at the end of the Summer at the Retirement Education Centre that is going to concentrate on the variety of ways we might try to write poetry which goes beyond the mainstream of Carol Ann Duffy/Staying Alive and into the murky waters of the poetry ‘avant garde’ (if there is such a thing of course….). And of course keep your diaries free for National Poetry Day on the 6th October 2016 – this years theme is ‘Messages’.