Unleash the power of poetry with words on fire

International award-winning Tauranga poet Lee Murray will be reading from her Bram Stoker Award-winning collection 'Tortured Willows' at one of Tauranga's National Poetry Day events on Friday August 25. Photo: John Borren.

Setting words alight by unleashing the power of poetry is what Friday’s Phantom Billstickers National Poetry Day is all about.

Two events on in Tauranga will appeal to both classical poetry lovers visiting the city library during the day, through to those who prefer the rhythm of rap and hip hop at ‘Rhymes & Lyrics’ at Totara Street in the evening.

As well as this a ‘Words on Fire’ poetry workshop with poet Fi B Sullivan offers the opportunity to explore your own inner poet.

On Friday morning and afternoon, the Tauranga Library at 21 Devonport Road will be hosting workshops and readings, including Tauranga Writers' Lee Murray, an international award-winning poet who will be presenting some of the poems that won her the prestigious Cuba Prize this year, and a residency at Massey University.

Fi B Sullivan will be running a workshop titled 'Words on Fire' from 2.30pm - 3.30pm on Friday August 25 at Tauranga Library.

Starting at 11am, local wordsmiths will be presenting spoken work performances.

Over the lunch hour, ‘Everything, Everywhere: A Journey in Asian Speculative Poetry’ will be presented by Lee.

Lee will read from her Bram Stoker Award-winning collection 'Tortured Willows' and forthcoming prose poetry work 'Fox Spirit on a Distant Cloud', winner of the 2023 NZSA Laura Solomon Cuba Press Prize.

Between 12.45pm and 2pm, local wordsmiths will continue with spoken word performances.

From 2.30pm – 3.30pm, it’s time to attend an adult only poetry workshop with Fi B Sullivan to explore your inner poet, and find out about rhythms and rhymes, structure, and the power of words. There are only a few spots remaining in this free workshop titled ‘Words on Fire’. Reserve your spot here

More spoken word performances follow from local wordsmiths, and then at 5.30pm young wordsmiths will read their winning entries in a sonnet writing competition.

All events at Tauranga Library – He Puna Manawa - are free, but registrations are required for the workshop.

4 Corners will be headlining the Rhymes & Lyrics event at Totara Street on National Poetry Day. Photo: Supplied.

Friday evening – Rhymes & Lyrics

Rhymes & Lyrics will take Tauranga’s celebration of National Poetry Day into a groovy time at Totara Street, Mount Maunganui with the original flavours of spoken word, hip-hop and RnB.

Hailed as something different that the usual poetry slam, poets and performers at Rhymes & Lyrics will be blending hip-hop and RnB with poetry

Anyone coming can try their hand at the Open Mic section, or just come and groove along to the music and poetry of Archaeo, Captain Houndstooth, Ronna Grace from Whakatane, Christchurch’s King Cass, Phreaze, Jenna, Mr Ridl from Papamoa, and The Legendary: Headline Act 4 CORNERS from Hamilton, also featuring sounds by DJ Ayesha.

"This event will bring out a different crowd than those who usually attend poetry events," says Rhymes & Lyrics event organiser Dhaivat Mehta.

“With mixing in hip-hop and RnB, it’s going to provide more variety and bring out the hip-hop and RnB community in Tauranga, which is vast but isn’t often highlighted," says Dhaivat.

“We aim to host the event annually and continue to incorporate more artists, both local and visiting, to evolve the performers and continue to get more theatrical acts.

“With the broadening of performances each year, we’d expect to see the attendees expand into a wider range of people which is really exciting.”

The local Tauranga Western Bay Community Event Fund (TWBCEF) has supported this event by recently approving a grant of $4,000 to support the organiser's costs of promoting and hosting the event.

Nelita Byrne of Tauranga City Council says the fund sees significant value in the efforts Craft is making to connect and engage the wider community with arts.

“It’s fantastic to be able to support opportunities for people to experience a wider range of performances through Rhymes & Lyrics. Poetry, hip-hop and RnB are expressions – of thoughts, emotions, and experiences.

"This event will show a different flavour of performances appealing to different genres in our community. The aim for this event is that they will be able to expand year on year to continue showcasing the wider range of poetry.”

The evening starts at 6.30pm, Friday August 25, at Totara Street, 11 Totara Street, Mount Maunganui with tickets to the R18 event available here

Friday August 25              Programme at Tauranga Library:
11am-12pm                       Spoken word performances from local wordsmiths.
12pm – 12.45pm                Everything, Everywhere: A Journey in Asian Speculative Poetry with Lee Murray
12.45pm-2pm                    Spoken word performances from local wordsmiths.
2.30pm-3.30pm                'Words on Fire' Workshop: Explore your inner poet. Find out about rhythms and rhymes,structure and the power of words with Fi B Sullivan.
2.30pm-3.30pm                  Listen to spoken word performances from local wordsmiths.
5.30pm-6.30pm                  Support some young wordsmiths as they read their winning entries in a sonnet writing competition and celebrate with the winners!
Location:                            He Puna Manawa, 21 Devonport Road, Tauranga
Further info:                        https://rb.gy/f6kbu

Rhymes & Lyrics - at Totara Street
6.30pm – 10.30pm             Rhymes & Lyrics at Totara Street, 11 Totara Street, Mount Maunganui. Buy tickets to Rhymes & Lyrics here
Entry Details:                     $20 purchased online. $30 at the Door. R18.
Date/Times:                        25 August, 6:30-10:30 pm
Location:                            Mauao Performing Arts Centre, 11 Totara Street Mount Maunganui
Contacts:                           Dhaivat Mehta connect@craft.org.nz.
Ticket Purchases:               Rhymes and Lyrics | Totara Street - Flicket
Further Info:                        https://www.facebook.com/events/652568039725384


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