Yesterday was the second day of the Play on Words Literature Festival and the second Open Mic at Forest Arts Centre in New Milton, an evening of spoken word hosted by Holly Spillar.
Holly brings a welcoming energy to this Open Mic, matched by a warm, encouraging crowd of around 20 people. A mixed audience of old and new faces gathered to listen, as Holly asked people to choose a random number from the sign up sheet, determining who would perform first.
A wide range of material was presented by the performers. Poetry about women's football and men dancing with women who were not their wives, fiction and non-fiction prose around tick infestations and rain incantations, alongside poetry written by other people, read aloud by audience members and enthusiastically cheered on.
Over ten people shared their work, yet time flew, leaving enough room for additional contributions. Damian O’Vitch, one of the features for this Friday’s Tongue Fu event, recited three poems by heart.
The local residents enjoyed having an open mic so close to their homes, and were delighted to see young people taking part in the event. Next month’s open mic will be on December 5th, I wonder what our performers will bring to the mic next?
Carla Hall - Breakthrough Apprentice