Beat Street November 2009

photo by Ash IlottNovember’s Beat Street was great fun and the new home – Arch Angel, under the S-Bahn near Alexander Platz – works a treat.  The room had an warm and enthusiastic vibe and good accoustics, and if a performer had some impeccable timing, the rumble of the trains overhead could add some magnificent drama.

photo by Ash Ilott My set was a mixture of tested pre-Berlin poems, including one of the first I ever performed (A Fantasy in F), and stuff from the last year or so.  I opened with To the Edge, which, being an embarking poem, seemed as fitting a place as any to start.photo by Ash Ilott

After a sea voyage or two, we travelled through a sinister world below, the romance of a new life in an old world, the unsavoury spectre of Evil Pink Day, inspirations and transformations, obsession via creepy cliché, the desolation of good-bye, and time loss.

photo by Ash IlottIt was the first time I’d performed a full set without reading, and I’d recommend it heartily.  Not having your hands and eyes occupied with the paper lets you connect so much better with the audience and, I think, put a lot more energy into the performance.  Curiously, it’s also a lot less stressful, because you don’t seem as inclined to over-correct.  And learning the poems is a good way to pick up anything that isn’t quite working.

photo by Ash Ilottphoto by Ash Ilott

photo by Ash Ilott

Thanks to organiser Rob Grant for the gentle prodding to take the stage, and huge electric thanks to a fantastic audience: it’s beautiful to perform to an audience whose energy you can feel coming back at you.  Thanks also to the steady hand of Ash Ilott for the photos here presented.

photo by Ash Ilottphoto by Ash Ilott

Thanks to Rob Grant for the gentle prodding to take the stage, and huge electric thanks to a fantastic audience: it’s beautiful to perform to an audience whose energy you can feel coming back at you.  Thanks also to the steady hand of Ash Ilott for the photos here presented.

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