Octavia Poetry at Serpentine Galleries

Ideas Through Art: Poetry from the Personal

Octavia Poetry Collective will lead a workshop for educators exploring poetry as a method to understand and develop personal identities.

‘Leading out of current discourse around migration, movement and identity, the workshop will create a space to explore how we individually and collectively see and understand the world.
Using creative writing, group reading, and critical discussion, we will explore the potential of poetry to address diverse personal histories. We will propose a selection of beyond-the-curriculum poets in order to re-think conventional understandings of poetry and build strategies for identifying ourselves in literature. The session includes time and support to map out ways of applying the ideas to your classroom.’

The workshop is FREE, booking is essential via Eventbrite, for more information:



Octavia Poetry return to Southbank Centre

Josette and Hibaq

The incredible Octavia Poetry Collective will be performing Southbank Centre as part of Strive Festival 2016 on Saturday 6th August, 8-9pm.
Strive is a fantastic festival for and curated by young creatives.
Tickets are just £5, and there are 50% off concessions too. A bargain really for the show we have in store.


The Rich Mix Anniversary Comrade

Rich Mix Com

The Rich Mix Anniversary Camarade
May Monday 2nd : 6pm : Free entry

May 2nd : 6pm : Free Entry http://richmix.org.uk/events/spoken-word/rich-mix-anniversary-camarade at Rich Mix 35-47 Bethnal Green Road, London E1 6LA

To celebrate the ten year anniversary of Rich Mix a special celebratory Camarade event will bring together some of the best known pairs from the series, all of whom had their debut at Rich Mix, alongside some brand new commissioned pairs of young and established poets, invited especially for the night. Featuring:

Sandeep Parmar & James Byrne
Carol Watts & George Szirtes
Mark Waldron & Rebecca Perry
Prudence Chamberlain & Eley Williams
Giovanna Coppola & Clover Peake
Mischa Foster Poole & Chrissy Williams
Julia Lewis & Harry Man
Tasimbaradzwa Kanyangarara & Susie Campbell
Rachel Long & Elizabeth-Jane Burnett
Farhana Khatun & Francine Elena
Kathryn Maris & Amy Key
SJ Fowler & more…

Octavia’s Ten Minute Takeover of the Arts Emergency Podcast

The brand new Arts Emergency Podcast has arrived! Check it out on iTunes (https://itunes.apple.com/…/the-arts-emergency…/id1044115346…) and Soundcloud (https://soundcloud.com/arts-emergency/ep13). This month, we’re talking vulnerability, gratitude and life-defining moments. With stories from playwright and producer Deborah Pearson and Ninjatune signing Throwing Shade. Octavia Poetry takeover the podcast for a whole ten minutes to share some of their work and discuss why their workshop is so valuable. Octavia’s founder and this month’s Poet In Residence Rachel Long delivers an incredible poem exploring mental health. And Arts Emergency student Edie Friar presents the music that means the most to her in this episode’s Student Soundtrack.

Arts Emergency

Octavia Celebrating WOW at The Poetry Library


Josette and Hibaq

See the canon differently at an event celebrating unsung women poets and up-and-coming stars.

Octavia is a poetry group of women of colour, led by Rachel Long. The group explores issues of intersectionality, sexuality, and the representation of women of colour.

The group explores issues of intersectionality, sexuality, and the representation of women of colour.

The women have also been working with Poetry Library librarians to discover some of the hidden heroines of poetry. They highlight the significance of their voices both on stage and in a resource at the event.

Free but booking essential. Emailspecialedition@poetrylibrary.org.uk to reserve your place.

This event is supported by Apples and Snakes.

Serious Play @ Barbican


Easmes 1

Come, Serious Play @ Barbican Centre, Sat 28th November 2015
11am – 5pm, Garden Room, Fountain Room and foyer spaces


For Charles and Ray Eames, the importance of play was a source of creativity and made its way into all of their work. Immerse yourself in the joy of play through a day of workshops, performances and activities at this free, one day event inspired by The World of Charles and Ray Eames. There will be an array of wonderful things going on that day, from making your own spinning tops to contributing to installations as well as music and dance.

I’ll be running TWO poetry workshops alongside Antosh Wojcik – Poet, Performance Poet, Writer one for Children (6-11 yrs), 11am-12.30pm, and the Advanced Workshop (13-18 yrs), 1.30-3pm in which we’ll play with words and their meanings, re-imagine Lewis Carroll’s ‘nonsense’ poem Jabberwocky, construct a 3D House of Cards poem and end with a performance to a live audience.

For further information and to book your place on the poetry workshops please contact: creative.learning@barbican.org.uk.


Why Not Strive?


Why Not Strive? An Inclusive club night for young people made by Southbank Centre Youth Ambassadors happening tomorrow night (Friday 23 October), Festival Village, Southbank Centre, 7-9pm. I’ll be performing alongside RaymondAntrobus and Heart ‘N’ Soul DJ’s.
Really wishing I’d had the good sense to have gone to a club night this cool, of poetry, music and activism, when I was younger. Sigh. ‘What we know now we didn’t always know’ comes to mind…

It’s free. Come x

The Poetry Takeaway

I was in The Poetry Takeaway van last Sunday @ Brunel University’s Lit Fest. I’m back inside what is fast becoming my favourite place tonight @Discovery Centre, Stratford.


Intercity Flow Anthology Launch

I’ve been a bad website post-er of late. This is because I have been doing lots of post-worthy things rather than not. I probably need to learn how to do both at the same time – like taking a photo of oneself in a club having a good time.  Or not.

Alas, this is what I’ll be doing this coming Wednesday: Intercity Flow at Southbank Centre
https://www.facebook.com/events/1673769699506219/. It’s going to be a wonderful event launching an exciting anthology of poetry by young poets and their mentors from all over Europe. The evening will include readings by Jacob Sam-La Rose, Joelle Taylor, Kayo Chingonyi, Shosana Anderson, Will Tyas, Siddharta Bose, Ollie O’Neil and that’s just the Londoners…

Tickets are very reasonable for all this poetry covering all these miles.


Spirit Level, Royal Festival Hall, Southbank Centre, London

Book tickets: 0844 847 9910 southbankcentre.co.uk/londonlitfest