StAnza’s programme packed with new talent and rising stars

StAnza, Scotland’s International Poetry Festival has always been the perfect place to hear new voices and discover emerging talent.

And 2020 is set to be no different.

The annual festival which this year takes place between 4-8th March in St Andrews, Fife, is as much about launching new talent as it is about bringing together some of the most well-known and best loved poets and artists from all around the world.

Festival Director Eleanor Livingstone said: ‘StAnza is delighted to be bringing a host of exciting and hugely talented newcomers to Fife next month to perform alongside some of the biggest names in poetry. Ensuring our programme is diverse and vibrant is key to the success of StAnza year after year.’

Among the new voices in this year’s programme are Angie Strachan, Daisy Lafarge, Jay G. Ying and Dorothy Lawrenson.

Glasgow-based poet Angie Strachan is a regular performer in the Scottish spoken word scene and was runner up in the 2019 Scottish Poetry Slam Championships. Daisy Lafarge received an Eric Gregory Award in 2017 and a Betty Trask Award in 2019, and was runner up in the 2018 Edwin Morgan Poetry Award.

Jay G. Ying, a Chinese-Scottish poet, is a winner of a 2019 New Poets Prize and his debut pamphlet Wedding Beasts was shortlisted for the Saltire Society’s Callum MacDonald Memorial Award 2019. Dorothy Lawrenson whose poems have appeared in the Best New British and Irish Poets 2019 and was also the winner of the Wigtown Scots Prize in the 2019 Wigtown Poetry Prize.

Another new voice is Roseanne Watt, winner of the 2015 Outspoken Poetry Prize (Poetry in Film) and runner up in the 2018 Aesthetica Creative Writing Award. Her debut collection Moder Dy won the Edwin Morgan Poetry Award and is also shortlisted for the 2019 Saltire Society Poetry Book of the Year Award.

Two more emerging Scottish poets are Robbie MacLeòid and Jeda Pearl. Robbie MacLeòid, StAnza’s poet in residence, was recently commissioned for the Year of Young People as a songwriter by Fèisean nan Gàidheal; his song ‘Beò an Dòchas’ was the centrepiece of their 2018 Blas concert, where it was sung by over 700 school children. In 2019 Jeda Pearl was awarded Cove Park’s Scottish Emerging Writer Residency and was shortlisted for the Moniack Mohr Bridge Awards.

New international voices appearing this year at StAnza include Alycia Pirmohamed, Pauli Tapio and Charlotte Van den Broeck. Alycia Pirmohamed is a Canadian-born poet living in Scotland, her pamphlet, Faces that Fled the Wind, was selected by Camille Rankine for the 2018 BOAAT Press Chapbook Prize and she has also been the recipient of the CBC Poetry Prize, the 92Y Discovery Contest and the Sawti Poetry Prize in English.

Finnish poet Pauli Tapio’s debut collection Sparrows and Time (2017) was awarded the Helsingin Sanomat book award for best debut work, prose or poetry, and the International Bridges of Struga award for best poetry debut. Belgian, Charlotte Van den Broeck has published two critically acclaimed books of poetry and has been awarded the Herman De Coninck Debut prize and the triannual Paul Snoek Prize.

Finally, Alannah Moar, a young singer/songwriter from Orkney will perform at the festival. Alannah’s unique voice has seen her perform alongside the likes of Alan Cumming, KT Tunstall, Amanda Palmer, Callum Beattie and many more.

StAnza is supported by the National Lottery through Creative Scotland and the Year of Coasts and Waters 2020. The festival will bring over 100 events including poetry, music, film and art, many of which are free, to St Andrews for five days from 4 to 8 March.

Tickets are on sale and can be purchased in person, by phone and online. For more details visit HERE.