Aug 8, 2017 | Blog | 0 comments |


#poetry @edfringe is minority thing hidden in the minority category of #spokenword.

As I try to drum up custom flyering for #manandboy I fear I am invariably and immediately judged as promoter of stuff that is inherently bad, disreputable and embarrassing. Maybe in part that my illness talking – and of course many of the people who have come to the gig have proved their appreciation by shelling £6 on the slim volume London Poems. But for the vast majority of fringegoers #poetry seems to be a dirty word.

I saw Frankie Vah by Luke Wright (Underbelly , Venue 61, 9.20pm) last night. It tells the 1980s life story of a post-punk student drop out and goes straight into my top-rated ‘really good’ category. It is beautifully written. It is fast, sometimes furious, often insightful, and always absorbing. It also has a dirty secret – though the cover is blown as soon as the piece begins. This is an hour long poem. Is it advertised as #poetry? Is it heck. Look it up under the ‘spoken word’ and/or ‘theatre’.

Also in my ‘really good’ basket is Cathy (Pleasance Dome, Venue 23, 3.30pm), inspired by Ken Loach’s Cathy Come Home. The injustice of 2017 housing policy in the UK, especially London, is laid bare. This excellent work made me angry and terarful at the same time.