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The this collection McEwan Hall showcase: THANKS!

In 100 Poems, film, poetry on March 31, 2010 at 12:28 pm

this collection McEwan Hall showcase

this collection would like to thank the following people for helping to make our two-day showcase such a huge success!

First of all, none of it — and we mean none of it! — would have been possible without all the hard work and enthusiasm of the DMSP Masters volunteers, who dedicated hours and hours of manpower and creativity to making the event a reality. Also known as ThatCollective, these people are:
Simon Herron
Liam Boyd
Mousa Al-Rawahi
Marzieh Jarrahi
Liang Zheng
Yunika

We are also incredibly grateful for our contact at the University of Edinburgh, the fantastic Mr John Lee, and to the dream-team that is Mike Spells & Garry Gale of City of Edinburgh Library Services. Thank you for your patience, and your dedication to our project!

The evening could also not have happened without the input of the following lovely people:
The University of Edinburgh servitors
Glasgow School of Art
CRA:CC ensemble, in particular Nicole McNeilly and Liene Rozite
Dave Woods
Heather Bowry
Justin Vitello
Leon Crosby
Everyone who helped with or facilitated our free film workshops
in the run-up to the showcase.

Films made by members of the public during the workshops were inspired by the poems and films of Norman McLaren, Stan Brakhage, Rose Lowder, Standish Lawder, DA Pennebeker and Maya Derren.

But finally, we’d like to thank all our hugely talented poets and filmmakers, without whom this collection could not exist — and massive thanks to everyone who came along to the McEwan Hall to watch, listen, enjoy and respond. See you next time!

Claire and Stefa

this collection showcase photo by Tom Bishop.

Day Two: the this collection McEwan hall showcase finale

In 100 Poems, film, poetry on March 31, 2010 at 10:38 am

this collection McEwan Hall showcase

Following the success of our film exposition the day before, expectations were high for our poetry-film finale on Friday 26th…

The evening kicked off at 6.30pm when we flung open the doors of the McEwan Hall, and were delighted to find an already-sizeable gaggle of keen poets, filmmakers and enthusiasts waiting on the doorstep. We quickly uncorked the first of many bottles of free wine and sat back to watch the influx of visitors. Once the crowd had gathered, Claire kicked off with a speech welcoming everyone to the event, giving a potted history of this collection and explaining what the evening had in store. Stefa then gave a brief round of thanks to all the wonderful people who’d helped make the event happen, and then without further ado, the party got under way!

The first four poets to read were Dan Mussett (a late addition, stepping in to replace Morgan Downie who sadly couldn’t be with us), Russell Jones, Anita John and McGuire. Russell was spotted brandishing copies of his pamphlet, The Last Refuge (Forest Publications), which would suggest his reading went down very well with those who gravitated towards Poet Station #1. At Station #2 Dan Mussett gave a beautiful reading in spite of his late addition to the bill, and Anita John gathered a sizeable audience in the upper gallery at Station #4. Meanwhile at gallery Station #3 McGuire was a total triumph — even gathering a crowd in the main hall below! These four poets were followed by Tom Bristow, Juliet Wilson, Simon Jackson and Andrew C Ferguson respectively — Juliet brought along copies of her hot-off-the-press pamphlet ‘Unthinkable Skies’ (Calder Wood Press) and read a particularly lovely poem about a sycamore tree, among others. Simon Jackson was multi-tasking, as two of his films were also showing in the hall below, and Andrew and Tom both received rapturous rounds of applause from their respective audiences.
The third sets were provided by Rob A Mackenzie, our very own Claire (standing in for Aileen Ballantyne who also sadly couldn’t make it in the end), Christine de Luca and Chris Lindores. Rob and Christine both read excellently and Chris Lindores was a tour de force, gathering the largest crowd of the evening — and the most glowing feedback! — and shifting a fair few copies of his pamphlet, You Old Soak (Read This Press) over the course of the evening! The poetry was wrapped up by Andrew Philip, who read from his critically-acclaimed book The Ambulance Box (Salt); Jane McKie, whose film adaptation of La Plage (courtesy of Alastair Cook of DISSIMILAR) played in the background as she read; Hayley Shields, who entranced a small but attentive audience with her ghostly tales and accounts of Edinburgh’s darker side; and Mairi Sharratt, whose audience were asked to pick her set themselves, by shouting a series of numbers which each corresponded to a poem.

this collection McEwan Hall showcase

All the poetry readings were accompanied by a continuous stream of beautiful, dark, inspiring and moving images courtesy of our many talented filmmakers. Adaptations by Helen Askew, Sean Gallen, Abhinaya Muralidharan, Alastair Cook, Ginnetta Correli, Diana Lindbjerg Jorgense, Dominique De Groen, Hans Peter, Heather Bowry, James Mildred and Francesca Sobanje, Laura Witz, Lewis Bennett, Rawan Mohammed, Rose Creasy, Simon Jackson, Stefanie Tan and ThatCollective all graced our projector screens as the evening progressed. Although some of the films included audio (piped through headphones at each station), the McEwan Hall had its own soundtrack for the evening. This took the form of a mercurial city soundscape, put together by the super-talented Simon Herron of ThatCollective; as well as improvised music and ethereal sounds from the CRA:CC experimental ensemble.

this collection McEwan Hall showcase

The evening rounded up just before 9pm, but the festivities continued well into the night at various alternative venues around the city! Altogether, the this collection team worked out that over 200 people had come along to be a part of our showcase, and so far we’ve received glowing feedback from poets, filmmakers, musicians and visitors alike. Thanks so much to everyone who came along, everyone who helped us organise, set up, take down, fund, promote or otherwise realise the event, and of course to all the brilliant artists who lent their creativity to us for the evening!

Here’s to the next…
Love,
Claire and Stefa

this collection showcase photos by Tom Bishop.

Day One: the this collection McEwan Hall showcase

In 100 Poems, film, poetry on March 25, 2010 at 11:29 pm

this collection day one

So unless this is your first visit to this blog, you’ll know that today marked the first half of our two-day March film and poetry showcase at Edinburgh’s magnificent McEwan Hall

…and what a first day it was! We flung open the doors at 10am and greeted the good people of Edinburgh as they came in to escape the swirling haar. Our DIY flags, posters and flyers drew a crowd made up of all sorts of people — some told us they’d had the date marked in their diary for weeks, while others just wandered in for a look and seemed to like what they saw! The film screenings were spread across four screens within the main hall space, with each screen housing around five or six films. These were subtly grouped by theme — warm, cold, stop-motion, palimpsest — and accompanied by their respective poems either on-screen or in DIY pamphlets for viewers to pick up and read. Sound engineer Simon Herron provided a spectacular non-stop city soundscape which played throughout the hall, and Glasgow-based experimental orchestra CRA:CC provided an improvised musical soundtrack in response to the films as they played out. Visitors were also able to congregate around our free press merchandise table: a source of books, pamphlets, magazines, journals, promotional materials and all manner of other poetry- and film-related paraphernalia, all of it completely free!

Through the afternoon we saw a steady stream of visitors, all of whom responded positively to the installation and the project as a whole. Documenting their reactions to the films was almost as enjoyable as the films themselves — watch this space for photos, video and stop-motion footage of the event in due course! We were particularly happy to see people who’d never heard of this collection, but who left raving about it and asking how they could come on board and get involved!

If you missed us today, please don’t worry — the event continues tomorrow (Friday 26th March) at the McEwan Hall in Bristo Square, Edinburgh. This time it’s our grand finale: an evening event at which the poets get a chance to take to the spotlight and read their works. The films will be screened throughout, and the whole thing will again be accompanied by our soundscape and brilliant improvised sounds from the spectacular CRA:CC ensemble. Our free merch stall will again be open for business, and there’ll also be free wine for anyone who turns up! Entry to the event is also totally free, and everyone is welcome. Doors open at 6.30pm and the readings kick off at 7pm. We really hope you’ll come and join us, and spread the word!

(this collection image by Marzieh Jarrahi.)

Filmmakers! Come and join this collection!

In film on February 26, 2010 at 1:49 pm

Are you a budding filmmaker? Want to get involved in a huge non-profit public access project in Edinburgh? Want to make a film that may end up being shown on the Edinburgh festival circuit? Come and find out more about this collection at our FREE speed-dating evening on Friday 5th March from 6.30pm at the Scottish Poetry Library.

It doesn’t matter what stage you’re currently at — maybe you’ve only just heard about this collection? Maybe you’ve visited our website and have a poem or poems in mind that you’d like to adapt? Maybe you’ve already started — maybe you attended one of our free film workshops? Or perhaps you have a completed film already under your belt. Wherever you are with the project, we’d love for you to come along to our poetry/filmmaking speed-dating event on Friday 5th March at the Scottish Poetry Library, starting at 6.30pm.

Basically, the event will be an opportunity for you to meet your poet — or, if you are not yet working on a specific poem — to find a poet you think you’d like to work with, and talk over your ideas. You’ll be able to speak with poets whose work you’ve earmarked for possible collaboration, as well as poets whose work you maybe haven’t seen yet. We’re hoping it’ll be a laid-back, fun and productive evening for all involved.

If you’d like to attend, you’ll need to:
– check out the 100 poems at http://thiscollection.org before you come along, and pick out any poem/s you think you’d really like to work with
– provide previous work (if you have it) so we can show the poets you’ll be meeting what kind of stuff you do (if you can, feel free to bring your own tech to play your videos from — or if you have clips online, respond by email (to film@thiscollection.com) with some links, and we’ll be able to play the footage for you)
– RSVP to film@thiscollection.com so we can get an idea of numbers (and the poet: filmmaker ratio)!

As well as giving you the chance to mingle with Scotland’s poetic rising stars and superstars, we’ll also be holding a raffle with covetable prizes up for grabs… including a state-of-the-art videocamera phone and a year’s supply of literature! The event is free and liquid refreshment will be provided.

So let us know if you can make it — please do try to come along at 6.30pm as we’re hoping to brief all the filmmakers prior to the poets arriving!

this collection poetry/filmmaking speed-dating event, 6.30pm on Friday 5th March, at the Scottish Poetry Library.

Hope to see you there!

Claire and Stefa
film@thiscollection.com

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