Every month hear some fantastic exiled writers and musicians and there is an Open Mic session too.

Thursday 13 June 2024 at 7 pm

Poetry of Protest

Spotlight on Gaza

An evening exploring the role of poets and writers in protests movements and how activist arts can influence the anti-war movement.

Featuring Inua Ellams, Tasneim Zyada, Denisse Vargas -Bolaños, Shahd I Karaeen Mahnavi and Jude Rosen.

Hosted by Danielle Maisano.

Born in Nigeria, Inua Ellams is a cross-disciplinary artist, an internationally touring performer, a poet, playwright, screenwriter, graphic artist & designer. His published books of poetry include Candy Coated Unicorns and Converse All Stars, Thirteen Fairy Negro Tales, The Wire-Headed Heathen, #Afterhours, and The Actual. His first play The 14th Tale was awarded a Fringe First at the Edinburgh International Theatre Festival. His plays include Barber Shop Chronicles, Three Sister and The Half-God of Rainfall. In 2023, He was honoured with an MBE for Services To The Arts, and an Honorary Doctorate from University Of The Arts, London.

Tasneim Zyada is a London-based writer and published poet. Born into a tumultuous history with her grandparents fleeing Haifa, Palestine in 1948, she documents the generational stories that rise to the surface within her own. Tasneim’s work touches on memories, mental health, relationships and faith.

Denisse Vargas -Bolaños is a Bolivian poet and writer. She is a member of the feminist literary collective “Las Juanas” and of SLAP (Spanish and Latin American Poets and Writers). Her poems and short stories were published in various anthologies, and literary magazines, including Invisible Presence, New Voices (2018).

Shahd I Karaeen Mahnavi is a Palestinian poet and entrepreneur, born and raised in Jerusalem. Growing up in a creative household with poet parents, she developed a deep love for writing, art, and singing from a young age. At 18, she moved to the UK to further her studies. Today, Shahd utilises poetry, notably written in her second language of English, as a powerful medium to address oppression and injustice, amplifying the voice of the Palestinian people; a cause she remains committed to and she continues to attend poetry and community events to make a positive impact and promote peace.

Jude Rosen is a former oral historian, urban researcher and translator and currently runs poetry workshops for refugees and migrants. Her pamphlet, A Small Gateway, (Hearing Eye in 2009) of East End Jewish family life and intercultural history includes a sequence on Palestine. A pamphlet Underfoot is currently in competition and poems have been published in Tears in the Fence. Poems from Reclamations: voices from the Olympic zone (longlisted for the LiveCanon First Collection Prize in 2015) appeared in The Art of Dissent: Adventures in London’s Olympic State, (Marshgate Press, 2012); Long Poem Magazine, South Bank Poetry London Poems Anthology and Envoi.

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