BBC Contains Strong Language Festival 2022 comes to Birmingham
To celebrate the music and poetry of the Commonwealth
The four-day festival will be giving a platform to the most exciting, existing and emerging artists in the region as well as collaborating with artists from the Commonwealth in an eclectic variety of programmes broadcast across BBC Radio networks
PHOTO: Linton Kwesi Johnson
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Award-winning reggae poet, Linton Kwesi Johnson joins top writers and speakers as Contains Strong Language (CSL) – the UK’s biggest poetry and performance festival of new writing - returns to Birmingham from the 8-11 September 2022 as part of the Birmingham 2022 Festival.
As part of the BBC’s continued commitment to connecting listeners to music and poetry performed all over the UK, the four-day festival will be giving a platform to the most exciting, existing and emerging artists in the region as well as collaborating with artists from the Commonwealth in an eclectic variety of programmes broadcast across BBC Radio networks.
From live musical performances written in response to the events of 2020, through to genre-defying beatboxing exploring sex education and LGBTQ+ issues, Contains Strong Language Festival sees artists explore the poetry in the everyday with perspectives from all corners of the Commonwealth.
Highlights from BBC Contains Strong Language 2022 include:
Nick Ahad celebrates dub poet Linton Kwesi Johnson as he turns 70 and his native Jamaica turns 60, broadcast live on BBC Radio 4 Front Row on 8 September.
BBC Radio Club sees poet Emile Lauren Jones, who has been working with schools across Birmingham, share the work of fresh young talent to new audiences and deliver tips on how to get your poetry noticed.
Mercury Prize nominated saxophonist and rapper Soweto Kinch performs a live musical staging of ‘White Juju’ written in response to the Black Lives Matter movement as part of a special programme of commissions by PoliNations.
CSL 2022 invites ten of the best UK indie poetry presses to share their latest and most exciting publications with festivalgoers. Presses appearing include Arc Publications, Penned In The Margins and Bad Betty Press. Indie presses from across the commonwealth such as Math Paper Press in Singapore, Magabala Press in Australia and Farakina Books from Nigeria will bring titles otherwise unavailable in the UK
Alongside poetry readings and performances, a host of BBC radio programmes will record and broadcast from the festival at venues around the city such as the Birmingham Hippodrome and PoliNations including Cerys Matthews on 6 Music; BBC Radio 4’s Front Row and BBC Radio 3’s The Verb and Words & Music. BBC Radio 1Xtra partner with the Festival to present the Words First Talent showcase, celebrating the most talented poets and spoken word artists aged 18-30 from across the UK, with special guests including poet John Bernard and BBC Radio 1Xtra host, Swarzy. The 6 BBC Words First Finalists have been commissioned by BBC Arts to work with Calling the Shots and an emerging animator alumni from BBC Introducing Arts programmes to make a 2D animation film that will be premiered at the festival and will be broadcast on BBC iPlayer.
Sue Roberts, Head of Culture, Art and Music for BBC Audio North and Director of the Festival says: "We are thrilled to be bringing Contains Strong Language to Birmingham this year as part of the city’s celebration of the Commonwealth Games. With a wide range of performances from local, national and International poets and many broadcasts coming from the festival this September, we hope to shine a light on the incredible talent from Birmingham as well as all corners of the Commonwealth.
“As the BBC’s flagship poetry and spoken word festival it is brilliant to see it grow year on year and I am looking forward to what the 2022 festival will bring.”
BBC Contains Strong Language 2022 is a partnership between the BBC and VERVE Poetry Festival, and is supported by Arts Council England, Birmingham Hippodrome, the British Council, PoliNations, Creative Lives and also presented as part of the Birmingham 2022 Festival.
Full details of the programme can be found BELOW.
Join the conversation at #ContainsStrongLanguage
Source BBC Arts
July 29, 2022 6:29am ET by BBC Arts