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INSPIRING LITERATURE - WRITERS, TOURS & EVENTS

We offer writers for bookings to schools, venues and organisations - and we produce literature events and tours around the country. Get in touch if you would like to discuss an event or project.

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LONDON IS THE PLACE FOR ME 2014

25 and 26 Oct: A Carnival weekend festival of literature, music and limin'

This weekend Caribbean festival presented by renaissance one and Tilt with Carnival Village features a sparkling range of writers, calypsonians, presenters and raconteurs who have been inspired by home, diaspora and personal stories.  With film screenings, Calypso workshops, a tribute to Miss Lou, a Rum Shop Lime and food and drink on offer all weekend. Suitable for all ages the festival offers special rates for residents and families and will announce the full programme in late August.

COMING UP: EVENTS & TOURS

We are thrilled to be collaborating on readings and tours with Jean 'Binta' Breeze, John Agard, Patience Agbabi, Mark Gwynne Jones, Pete Bearder and more.  If you'd like to be kept informed, click on the JOIN THE MAILING LIST tab and sign up to receive our listings.

Patience Agbabi by Lyndon Douglas

Patience Agbabi by Lyndon Douglas

Patience Agbabi Tour 2014

April to November: giving readings from her new book TELLING TALES

We are working with acclaimed poet PATIENCE AGBABI, whose new poetry collection, Telling Tales, is a brilliant retelling of Chaucer's The Canterbury Tales for the 21st century, and is published by Canongate.

Click on the Telling Tales section of the site to read about Patience's upcoming events.

Photo of Mark Gwynne Jones

Photo of Mark Gwynne Jones

Wordworms!

a new show by Mark Gwynne Jones for ages 7 to 107

Award-winning poet Mark Gwynne Jones offers a new show for ages 7 to 107 that explores the magic and the possibilities of words. 

Offering wild imaginings and exhilarating performance, he invites you to meet the boy with an eye on his index finger, learn to escape school by becoming a cat, and to make friends with a giant toad!  Mark is presenting performances and workshops in the autumn and next spring. Contact renaissance one at hq[at]renaissanceone.co.uk if you are interested in a show coming to your area.

RECENT EVENTS

The Mouthy Poets

The Mouthy Poets

19 July: Mouthy Poets presents SAY SUM THIN 7

a one day festival with 50 young poets as your muse

MOUTHY POETS is inviting you to play, collaborate, write and create on 19 July, with 50 young poets as your muse, and with special guest poet John Agard.  Throughout the Nottingham Playhouse venue there will be workshops, scratch shows, interactive activities, a book binding session, and performances suitable for all ages.  Event in association with renaissance one.  An all-day ticket costs £14 (£10 concs).

2013 HIGHLIGHTS

12 DEC: CREATIVE SALON, LONDON (Rich Mix)

a forum for connecting with guest speaker Lemn Sissay

Creative Salon offers a stimulating forum for all who work in, or are interested in, poetry and spoken word, whether you are a writer, artist, practitioner, producer, small business owner, agency, or have a newly created role.  At our salon on 12 December, renowned poet LEMN SISSAY offered his insights and takes part in a Q & A with the audience.

Photo of Mark Gwynne Jones

Photo of Mark Gwynne Jones

18 OCTOBER: We Talk of Pride and Prejudice

A spoken word event for Off The Shelf Festival

As a special project developed for Sheffield's Off The Shelf Festival of Words, a talented group of local writers aged 15 to 21 years and leading poets Jean ‘Binta’ Breeze MBE, Mark Gwynne Jones and Sureshot offered their personal take on Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice and wrote and presented new poems. The project was developed by renaissance one in partnership with Writing Yorkshire and Off The Shelf. 

10 OCT: CREATIVE SALON at Rich Mix

a forum for creativity, connecting and sharing

At the October 2013 Creative Salon the poet, publisher and rock star Jessica Care Moore, who was visiting England from Detroit, offered her insights on writing, performing and developing a career in spoken word and performance.

FRIDAY 27 SEP: A STORY I AM IN - A Benefit Performance

Poetry, Music & Spoken Word celebrating James Berry’s Life in Literature

On 27 September, we presented a Benefit event for poet James Berry who celebrates 90 years of poetry, stories and song in 2014, through a remarkable line-up of nineteen poets, speakers and raconteurs including Roger McGough, Grace Nichols, Linton Kwesi Johnson, Ian McMillan, Alastair Niven, Andrew Motion, Michael Rosen, Myra Barrs and John Agard

 

 

17 and 18 AUGUST: PAUL KEENS-DOUGLAS IN LONDON

Come hear Tanti Merle at de Oval & other stories from the international raconteur

PAUL KEENS-DOUGLAS, the famed Trinidadian storyteller, raconteur and public speaker who is also the creator of the famous Carnival Talk Tent in Trinidad, performed for two nights as part of renaissance one and Tilt's summer series of literature at the Tabernacle.

19 Feb: INSPIRED WORD: TONGUE FU WITH SOWETO KINCH, CHRIS REDMOND AND JAN BLAKE

The Royal Albert Hall, Tongue Fu and Renaissance One presents TONGUE FU, one of London’s liveliest spoken word nights, at the Elgar Room  MOBO award-winning and Mercury Music Prize nominated saxophonist and MC SOWETO KINCH; performance poet and musician CHRIS REDMOND; one of Europe's leading storytellers, JAN BLAKE; and the TONGUE FU band.

1 Feb: Hannah Lowe and renaissance one presents Book Launch: Chick by Hannah Lowe

Hannah Lowe’s first book of poems explores her father, a Chinese-black Jamaican migrant who disappeared at night to play cards or dice in London's old East End to support his family. 'Chick' was his gambling nickname.

TV ARTS FEATURES ON SPOKEN WORD

renaissance one on Shoot the Messenger

In 2011 renaissance one teamed up with Vox Africa who produce the TV feature 'Shoot The Messenger', a Vox Africa magazine format show offering performance, insight and discussion, and hosted by Henry Bonsu. Together we developed three pilot TV arts segments showcasing innovative arts spanning the African continent and diaspora.

The first in March spotlighted Caribbean spoken word and Jamaican folklorist Louise Bennett click here to watch

The April segment featured Adisa click here to watch

The May-June segment explored the art of 'Liming' with performances by Jean 'Binta' Breeze, click here to watch

7 OCT 2012: Black Beats: Amiri Baraka in Conversation

renaissance one, the British Library, the Eccles Centre and Tilt present AMIRI BARAKA.

Before the Beats there was Jazz poetry.  Experience an unmissable visit by the world-renowned poet AMIRI BARAKA, a leading figure of the evolution of the spoken word genre, who has influenced politics, artistic practice and cultural change on an international scale.  During this event, Baraka offered readings and performance from the rich collection of his work.  The reading was preceded by a Q & A between Baraka and Dr Corinne Fowler on his career and influences.

5 OCT 2012: JUBILATION!

Celebrating 50 Years of Jamaican Independence

Enjoy an evening of poetry, songs and readings marking the 50th birthday of Jamaica's independence and the publication of a major new anthology, Jubilation!

Two of the best-known Jamaican poets, MERVYN MORRIS and KWAME DAWES, were joined by writer JANETT PLUMMER, musician AYANNA and singer-songwriter KAY REMEDY, to reflect on the historical moment of independence and the years that have followed.

3 SEP: OUT OF BOUNDS, LONDON LAUNCH

Britain re-mapped through a selection of writing on place

renaissance one and the British Library launched in London Out of Bounds, a new poetry anthology from Bloodaxe Books, and edited by Jackie Kay, James Procter and Gemma Robinson, that re-maps Britain through a dazzling range of Black and Asian poets and writers.  With readings by acclaimed poets and writers JOHN AGARD, GRACE NICHOLS, DALJIT NAGRA and CAROL LEEMING

 

12 - 25 AUG: LONDON IS THE PLACE FOR ME

Trinidad and Tobago 50 Years Independence Festival

London Is the Place For Me marked 50 years of Trinidad and Tobago independence at the Tricycle Theatre from Sunday 12 - Saturday 25 August, through a two week festival curated by Melanie Abrahams and Dominique Le Gendre.

As part of a month-long cultural festival hosted by the Trinidad and Tobago High Commission (TTHC), this two week happening offered some of T & T's finest artists, thinkers and shapers: EARL LOVELACE, DEBRA ROMAIN, PAUL KEENS-DOUGLAS, ALEXANDER D GREAT, MARTINA LAIRD, LAWRENCE SCOTT, MONIQUE ROFFEY, AMANDA SMYTH, ANTHONY JOSEPH, ROGER ROBINSON and a book launch of THE POEMS OF SAM SELVON.

SUN 10 JUNE 2012: A Great Day In Britain

25 Years of advancing political representation

The Bernie Grant Trust in association with Bernie Grant Arts Centre and renaissance one presented a reunion and commemoration of a quarter of a century of advancing political representation at the Bernie Grant Arts Centre, featuring speeches and anecdotes by David Lammey, Keith Vaz, Diane Abbott, Dotun Adebayo and more, and entertainment responding to the theme of political and cultural activism with comedy by Shazia Mirza, poetry by Adisa and music by calypsonian Alexander D Great and the Ken Rowe Band.

 

SAT 2 JUNE 2012: renaissance one at Keats House

Extreme Happy Fair & Creative Salon

Saturday 2 June: we offer 2 free spoken word happenings..

12pm - 2pm: Creative Salon: a forum for conversation and swapping skills, including a talk by Pete Brown (Cream, Michael Horovitz's New Departures Group, The First Real Poetry Band).  Free, BOOK HERE

6pm - 9pm: EXTREME HAPPY FAIR: a ‘spoken word fair' of Join renaissance one for a FREE Spoken Word Fair of speech juggling, poetry, live art, lucky dips, philosophy, and jam. Featuring Poet In Residence John Hegley, poet Jasmine Cooray, Comedian Prince Abdi, THE EXTREME HAPPINESS EXPERIMENT by Mesmer, Mystic, Philosopher and Magician Jonny Blamey, poet Philip Wells and other assorted guests.  Free, BOOK HERE

18 MAY: LONDON VOICES

A Wandsworth Arts Festival 2012 event

An aspirational live public showcase of spoken word, song and music.

It presents a platform of South Thames learners in the Creative Industries department - writers, singers, rappers and performers - alongside professional artists ADISA, AOIFE MANNIX, JAMES INGHAM and host MELANIE ABRAHAMS.

Friday 18 May 6pm – 8.30pm
Venue: South Thames College, Wandsworth High Street London SW18 2PP
Admission free, places limited BOOK A FREE TICKET

Visit the South Thames College and Wandsworth Arts Festival websites

14 & 16 MAY: Spoken Word - Pete (The Temp) Verses Climate Change

Watch a Poet solve Climate Change using only his mouth!

‘Poetry’s answer to Mark Thomas…expert performance skills’ Chortle

Pete The Temp brings high octane spoken word, musical comedy, political commentary, and audience participation in an hour long show at the Cockpit Theatre & The Albany.

3 May at 8pm: Cockpit Theatre, Gateforth Street London NW8 8EH Tickets £8/£6  BOOK TICKETS HERE

14 and 16 May at 8pm: The Albany, Douglas Way, Deptford, London SE8 4AG Tickets £7/£5 BOOK TICKETS HERE

Read the full details HERE

NOV 2011: Christian Campbell and Jacob Sam-La Rose

Searing poetry and performance

Monday 7 November 7pm at Free Word Centre

renaissance one with Peepal Tree, Bloodaxe and Free Word launched the poetry collections by Christian Campbell - 'Running The Dusk' - and Jacob Sam-La Rose - 'Breaking Silence'.  The evening offered readings by both poets of their new work and a Q & A, set within a salon style environment. More info HERE.

2011: JEAN 'BINTA' BREEZE: POETRY COLLECTION 'THIRD WORLD GIRL'

ENGLAND BOOK TOUR, JUN - NOV 2011

Award-winning poet Jean ‘Binta’ Breeze's new collection, Third World Girl, was published by Bloodaxe in 2011, and she toured with renaissance one between June and November.

What they say..                                  

'A major, perhaps even a great voice. For stature, Jean ‘Binta’ Breeze invites a Caribbean comparison with Maya Angelou, except that her range is broader still. Her poetry shifts effortlessly through standard English to a native Jamaican which has no equal in its emotional depth' The Herald

2015 Projects

Looking ahead to Tours and Events next year

In 2015 we will continue to support our roster of writers which includes Patience Agbabi, John Agard, Mark Gwynne Jones and Michael Brome through setting up education work and events. 

We're in the early stages of organising events in England for some outstanding international writers including the poet Lauren Alleyne and the novelist Robert Antoni, both of whom hail from Trinidad and Tobago and reside in the US, as well as US poet Tracie Morris who lives in New York.  Get in touch if you would like to discuss an event or activity.

Listen to Patience Agbabi on BBC RADIO 4's Front Row

Our literature events and work in schools and education settings

Artists Agency & Creative Producers

PASSIONATE ABOUT LITERATURE

RENAISSANCE ONE is a production and artists’ agency that fosters the best talent in literature and spoken word.

Our roster of exclusive clients, and associate artists and practitioners, is drawn from the most articulate and passionate in writing, performance and ideas today.

Because we sign up only the most exciting artists our small, focused company can work closely with them to foster connections and develop talents to build a long-lasting career in the arts.

Because we sign up only the most exciting artists our small, focused company can work closely with them to foster connections and develop talents to build a long-lasting career in the arClick here to see the range of writers and performers we have worked with over the years.

Jean 'Binta' Breeze: available for bookings in England Oct to Dec 2014

Acclaimed Poet, Playwright, Mentor based in Jamaica

JEAN 'BINTA' BREEZE is a poet, choreographer and director who has performed worldwide and is recipient of a NESTA Award, and this year, an Honorary Creative Writing Fellowship from the University of Leicester. She is the author of five poetry collections.  Her latest Book-DVD of selected poems, 'Third World Girl', was published by Bloodaxe in 2011, and in 2014, Jean visits England from Jamaica as part of an England Tour produced by renaissance one.

For enquiries about Jean contact renaissance one at hq[at]renaissanceone.co.uk.

Watch a poetry performance by Jean 'Binta' Breeze

JOHN AGARD: poet, playwright and children's author

His new poetry collection 'Travel Light, Travel Dark' is out now

John Agard is an award-winning Guyanese poet, playwright, and writer of children's books.  In 2012 he was a recipient of the Queen's Gold Medal for Poetry.  He has won numerous awards and his poems have been featured in the English GCSE anthology since 2002 meaning that many students study his work for their GCSE qualification. A former Writer in Residence at the South Bank Centre and a BBC Poet in Residence, Agard tours around the world to give readings and talks.  As an author of many collections of poetry including We Brits, Alternative Anthem and Clever Backbone his latest poetry collection, Travel Light Travel Dark, was published in 2013.