Press release: February 2007

Homelands and Exile

A panel discussion with poetry featuring Jackie Kay, Gwyneth Lewis, George Szirtes and Ruth Padel.

The theme of Homelands and Exile is being explored at this year's StAnza: Scotland's Poetry Festival. There is a wonderful opportunity to join in with this exploration when the Poetry Society presents Homelands and Exile, in association with the festival, on Tuesday 6 February at 7pm in London at the London Review Bookshop. This will be the first part in a panel discussion with poets Jackie Kay, Gwyneth Lewis and George Szirtes, hosted by Ruth Padel. The second part of the discussion will take place at the StAnza Festival of poetry in St Andrews on Friday 16th March 2007.

Tickets are £10 (£5 LRB subscribers, Poetry Society members and concessions)
Box Office 0207 420 9895.

The StAnza Discussion (part two) will continue and develop on Friday 16 March from 10.00-11.15am at Council Chamber, Town Hall, Queens Gardens, St Andrews. StAnza 2007 runs from 14-18 March.

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Notes to Editors

  • Jackie Kay was born and brought up in Scotland. She has published four collections of poetry, The Adoption Papers, winner of a Forward Prize, Other Lovers, which won the Somerset Maugham Award, Off Colour, shortlisted for the 1999 TS Eliot Award, and Life Mask (2005), all published by Bloodaxe. Trumpet (Picador, 1998), her first novel, won the Guardian Fiction Prize. She has written for the stage and television and a collection of her short stories, Why Don't You Stop Talking, was published in 2002. She teaches creative writing at Newcastle University
  • Gwyneth Lewis was born in 1959 in Cardiff, Wales. She writes both in Welsh, her first language, and in English, and her published poetry includes Parables and Faxes (1995), which won the Aldeburgh Poetry Festival Prize, Zero Gravity (1998) which was shortlisted for the Forward Poetry Prize (Best Poetry Collection of the Year) and was a Poetry Book Society Recommendation, and Y Llofrudd Iaith (2000) winner of the Arts Council of Wales Book of the Year Award, and most recently Keeping Mum (2003). She was named as first Welsh Poet Laureate in 2005.
  • George Szirtes was born in 1948 in Budapest and came to England as a refugee in 1956. He trained as a painter in London and Leeds, and is the author of numerous volumes of poetry, including Reel (Bloodaxe 2004), for which he won the TS Eliot prize. He has also produced many works of translation, books for children, plays, musicals, opera libretti and oratorios, as well as works for the radio. He teaches Creative Writing at Norwich School of Art and Design and the University of East Anglia.
  • Ruth Padel was born in London in 1947. Before publishing poetry she studied classics in Oxford, Paris and Berlin. A Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature, and of the London Zoological Society, she has published six collections of poetry and won the National Poetry Prize. Her most recent collection, The Soho Leopard, (Chatto 2004) was a Poetry Book Society choice. She has published a variety of non-fiction including 52 Ways of Looking at a Poem and more recently The Poem and the Journey. She was Chair of the Poetry Society from 2003 to 2006.
  • The only regular festival dedicated to poetry in Scotland, StAnza is international in outlook. Held in the ancient university town of St Andrews, the festival presents world class poets and writers performing in exciting, atmospheric venues. See for further details.


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