The Hidden Door Festival is now at Day 5 and halfway through its 10 day run at the Old Leith Theatre. As with every night, there is plenty art, performance and film to experience. Tonight Spoken Word is also on the programme with Inky Fingers and Sonnet Youth supplying the poetry and storytelling.
The Speakeasy room is round the back of the Old Leith Theatre and is active all year round as a wedding reception venue. Tonight the location is taking on an entirely different purpose with Edinburgh based poetry collective Inky Fingers programming an hour of entertainment. Their regular events usually consist of open mics and a selected feature performer, but tonight they present three feature artists. Bristol based Miles Chambers is the first poet to take to the stage. He performs with enthusiasm and vigour and has a unique uplifting style that endears him to the audience. His poem Bristol, Bristol is a standout and highlights the poet’s love of his hometown.
Tania Hershman is a short story writer and poet also from Bristol. She performs two stories from her latest collection Some of us Glow More Than Others. Her short set is well received and her talents as a writer are obvious in her fine use of words ability to raise a laugh. The hour is concluded by local poet Davie Cunningham. He is a bag of energy and leaps around the front of the stage while he delivers his verse. The three feature performers show the diverse range of talent that Inky Fingers look to promote.
Sonnet Youth is a popular spoken word night in Glasgow. The event is presented by Kevin P. Gilday, and Cat Hepburn and is a poetry house party with its very own DJ. Feature poets are again the name of game with Iona Lee, and Drew Taylor-Wilson being the guests. Host Kevin P. Gilday kicks things off with his own short set. He looks to keep the house party vibe going by delivering three short comedic poems and is a great introduction to the hour. The first guest tonight is Iona Lee. She is a Scottish Slam poetry champion and also takes to the house party theme with some upbeat and energetic performance poetry that goes down well with the audience. It is obvious why she is a poetry champion, as Iona has an engaging stage presence and the ability to captivate an audience with her words.
Drew Taylor-Wilson is a theatre-maker and poet whose poetry has a lot in common with stand-up comedy. His set includes a homage to Take That and a Triptych of poems that take the audience on a journey down an escalator. This is the first time that Sonnet Youth have presented an event in Edinburgh. The Hidden Door festival is all about discovering new things and the Edinburgh audience has discovered a new and exciting poetry night that will hopefully return to the city soon.