Back in May 2017 Luka Lesson, Jenny Lindsay, Omar Musa and Michael Pedersen presented a new work in progress performance at a special event at the Scottish Poetry Library. The final results of this collaboration is being presented at the Edinburgh International Book Festival and is the perfect event to kickstart the festival on it’s opening day. Earlier this year the four writers spent a week in Edinburgh devising the show, where they likely spent the time writing and bouncing ideas of one another. The poets have managed to trim their performance to just under an hour and a close to capacity crowd is eager to hear what they have come up with. The event is taking place in the Bosco Theatre on George Street. The room is like a small Circus big top and may not be the typical venue that you would expect to see and hear spoken word in Edinburgh during August.

The format of the event is simple and enjoyable. Each poet takes to the stage and performs a poem before passing the mic onto the next performer. Jenny Lindsay kicks things off and presents the familiar and unique Edinburgh voice in her own distinctive style. The poems come thick and fast with each performer having a distinctive and personal voice. Several themes are passed along between the poets. Family, friendship and belonging seem to find their way into several of the readings where evocative images of family and home are presented. The combination of having Edinburgh based poets and international artists gives the opportunity to the audience to experience different approaches to spoken word and performance poetry. The event concludes when Luka Lesson and Omar Musa take to the stage to present a collaborative piece. Their approach to spoken word has it’s influences in hop hop and their style and confidence is a fine way to end the evening.

The event is part of the Babble-On Strand at the Edinburgh International Book Festival. This programme features engaging events that present spoken word and performance poetry with further performances from Jenny Lindsay and Michael Pedersen due later at the festival.