What Days We're Having Now (2018/19)

What Days We're Having Now (2018/19)

When you’re on an adventure, you need a map…

We are a-flutter to announce the beginnings of our new touring poetry show: What Days We're Having Now:

Working with poets Alex MacDonald, Ella Frears and Will Harris, a pile of poems and a tangle of stage lights, Jaybird Live Literature will create its first show aimed specifically at 16-25 year olds. Navigating adolescence can be hard: sometimes a poem is the best map.

Read a poem by Alex
Read a poem by Ella
Read a poem by Will

We're very grateful for the Arts Council support which underpins our touring work, and are looking forward to getting back on the road in Autumn 2018. Our rehearsals finish shortly, and the tour will last till Spring 2019. Our title comes from a line in Alex' poem 'Gigantic Days' which will be included in the show.

Many of our venues and partners are in place already, but there will be space for a few more bookings. Show specifications will follow as we finalise the production, but if a poetry show for young people is a fit for your festival, venue, school or college, do drop us a line.

Follow our progress on Twitter and Instagram: #whatdays

About the Poets

Alex MacDonald has recently had poems published by Clinic, English Pen, Rising and The Oxfam Book of Young Poets. He was a runner up in the PigHog / Poetry School Prize and ran the reading series 'Selected Poems at the V&A Reading Rooms'. He's a parliamentary speech-writer by profession, and has a particular interest in young people's mental health.

'All I seem to do is drink milk from my favourite glass, / which was once a jar of fig jam' ('Kingfisher Days')

Ella Frears is a poet, writer and visual artist. She was awarded a place on the Jerwood/Arvon Mentoring Scheme 2016/17 and received a fully funded scholarship for the MA in Creative Writing at Royal Holloway where she was Poet in Residence writing about the Cassini Space Mission. She has also just been shortlisted for the poetry category of the Manchester Writing Competition

'Last night we slept under a full moon ... Have you ever tried it?' ('The Moonbathers')

Will Harris has worked in schools, led workshops at the Southbank Centre and taught for The Poetry School. He co-edits 13 Pages and organises The Poetry Inquisition. He is an Assistant Editor at The Rialto, part of the editorial team behind Swimmers and a fellow of The Complete Works III.

'Once I believed myself to be a cuckoo when, in fact / I was a pair of binoculars looking at a cuckoo' ('The Seven Dreams of Richard Spenser')

Show Details

Produced by Jaybird Live Literature

Directed and production design by Phoebe Stout

Sound and lighting design by John Castle

Full version: 50 mins, no interval, for theatres, arts centres and other technically equipped spaces

Basic version: 50 mins, no interval for schools, colleges, festivals, libraries and other non-technically equipped spaces

Fee includes travel, accom and expenses.

Tech Specs: Full version needs c4x4m playing space, moderately simple sound and LX, tours with technician. Basic version needs simple sound.

Marketing: comprehensive digital and print marketing material and support supplied, marketing duties shared with the producers who are live literature selling experts.

Education: Teacher-written study resources for literature and drama students at A level / college / university level will be available.

Participation: A poetry 'write-back' challenge for student audiences will accompany the show.

The themes and design of What Days We're Having Now will focus on the experiences of 16-25 year olds, although all poetry and performance audiences will find something to enjoy in it.

For more details, email julia@jaybird.org.uk