Student Guide 2015: best spoken word events in Edinburgh and Glasgow
Both cities boast more than just for annual book festivals for year round literary experiences
From Glasgow’s Aye Write! in spring to the Edinburgh International Book Festival in summer, there’s plenty of bookish goings-on. And outside of festival time, the two cities have a spoken word scene that’s in rude health. From regular open mic nights to curated literary cabarets, there are plenty of events to speak up about
The Word Factory hosts this event, which churns out five-minute slots of everything from poetry and prose to acoustic music. It takes place monthly at the Tron Theatre, and play time almost always happens on a Wednesday.
St Mungo’s Mirrorball
Does this event have a slightly unusual name? Yes. Is it one of the best spoken word nights in the city? Yes. This event, which is held at CCA, aims to support poets, and regularly showcases those with new work to present.
‘The spoken word revolution is here’ according to Loud Poets (or their Facebook at least). This is a slam-style, say-what-you-feel event, with monthly shows taking place at Broadcast on Sauchiehall Street.
This event takes place on the second and fourth Tuesday of every month at 445 Great Western Road. It features a wide range of performers and poets every time, and you can contact the organisers if you are interested in performing yourself.
Glasgow is so good for spoken word, it even has a festival dedicated to it. Glasgoes Poetic takes place from Mon 28 Sep–Sat 10 Oct, and celebrates all things versifi ed, from slam-style spoken word to on-point poetry.
Rally & Broad
Here at The List, we’re big fans of Rally & Broad: a spoken word duo who regularly put on ‘a magnifi cent cabaret of lyrical delight’ in the city (Bongo Club), featuring a range of different poets, writers and artists. The pair, also known as Jenny Lindsay and Rachel McCrum, champion poetry and spoken word in their performances, but mix in a little bit of music and dancing each time. They also regularly play at Stereo in Glasgow.
On the second Friday of every month, an eclectic and experimental night of poetry, performance and spoken word known as CAESURA takes place. Like Rally & Broad, there are different guest speakers each time, and the events usually take place at either the Saltire Society or Summerhall.
Described as ‘a monthly headfuck of poetry, animation and music’, this is one of the freshest nights in Auld Reekie. It was founded in December 2010 by poets Michael Pedersen and Kevin Williamson, and nowadays, there are regular events held in different locations across the city.
Taking place on the second Monday of the month at the Blind Poet bar, this well-established spoken word and poetry night is run by Alec Beattie and Roddy Shippin. If you’ve got something you’d like to share, get in touch and take the mic.
Organised by Kevin Cadwallender, this poetry-packed night takes place at the Persevere Bar. The formula is very simple: ten poets get ten minutes on stage, and there’s a mixture of emerging voices and big names.