I am an experienced and friendly workshop leader and have led sessions in schools, prisons, colleges, universities, residential homes, and in a variety of locations, from a boat on Orford Ness to a NATO base in Germany, with writers at every stage, from beginners to veterans, with different groups, from public sessions and celebration days to adults with learning difficulties and with every age from primary school to the over nineties.
Favourite workshop moment? That special sound of a room full of people, completely absorbed, their pens urgently scribbling away. I want participants to surprise themselves with what they've written. My workshops can focus on writing new poems but can also include the creation of a group poem for a public event - using contributions from attenders and participants - and performed to round off the day.
In May, June 2017 I was busy working on the Shanties on the Shore with composer John K Miles. Using Arthur Ransome's 'We Didn't Mean to Go to Sea' as a starting point, five songs and five poems were created and developed by 200 young people during two weeks of workshops on the Shotley Peninsula in Suffolk. The songs and poems were premiered at two concerts in June, at the Hayworth Theatre at Ipswich High School for Girls in Woolverstone, with 200 chillden singing alongside the City of London Sinfonia orchestra.
In the autumn of 2016 I led Suffolk Artlink's Jumpstart Project, working with adults with learning difficulties in Bury St Edmunds, Ipswich and Lowestoft, making poems, songs and films with Maurice Horhut on the piano. You can see the final films here:
Click on the picture (below)
to read 'Piece of Cake'
Click on pictures
to see them larger