Poem and a Pint programme returns for 2017/18 season

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14 September 2017 10:49AM

THE new season of Poem and a Pint gets under way next weekend with an appearance in Bardsea.

Guest poet Miriam Nash will be the star name as the popular programme gets under way once more at the Malt Kiln on Saturday September 23.

As well as being a skilled and engaging poet, Miriam is a performer and educator. Born in Inverness, she grew up in Scotland, England and Wales, spending her early years on the Isle of Erraid off the west coast of Scotland, where Robert Louis Stevenson's family once worked as lighthouse engineers.

She was awarded a Fulbright Scholarship to study poetry at Sarah Lawrence College in New York, and graduated with an MFA in 2014.

Miriam leads creative writing and performance workshops in schools, museums, mental health organisations and prisons, and she has worked and performed internationally, particularly in the UK, USA and Singapore.

She was the first Writer in Residence at Greenway, Agatha Christie’s summer home, as part of Writing Places with the National Trust, Literature Works and The Poetry Archive.

Her poetry has appeared in numerous magazines and her pamphlet, Small Change, was published in 2013.

She received an Eric Gregory Award from the Society of Authors in 2015, and was runner-up for the Edwin Morgan Poetry Award in 2016.

Voices of the island echo through her first book-length collection, All the Prayers in the House, which was published by Bloodaxe earlier this year to critical acclaim.

The music for the evening will be provided by The Bluegrass Project, consisting of Dave Wearing (double bass), Rod Demick (mandolin, guitar and vocals), Ben James (fiddle and vocals) and John Lamb (banjo, guitar and vocals).

The local act got together in 2013, and play a mix of traditional American instrumentals and songs with harmony vocals, mixing foot stomping dance tunes with soft ballads. They also throw in a few modern tunes played in bluegrass style, performing wherever possible without amplification.

They like to engage our audiences in the music and talk a little bit about the history of the music and performers past and present to introduce the pieces they play.

A rejuvenated open mic programme now sees a mix of invited five-minute poets and volunteers from the floor – those who wish to read on the night need to sign up at the door at 7pm.

Mark Carson is MC for the night, getting the 2017/18 season off to a rousing start.

Although there is no bar at the Malt Kiln, people are invited to bring their own drinks to the event, which gets under way from 7.30pm, and entrance is payable on the door.

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