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ArtfulScribe Newsletter - LIT FEST Edition

27 February 2023

LIT FEST 2023, 10th-12th March at MAST Studios, Southampton

ArtfulScribe LIT FEST 2023

10th - 12th March | In-Person 
MAST Mayflower Studios, Southampton

ArtfulScribe presents LIT FEST 2023, a literary weekend takeover festival at MAST Mayflower Studios, in partnership with the Department of English at University of Southampton and Art Asia, supported by Arts Council England.

We have built an ambitious, community-focused programme of showcases, masterclass and free events. Please see the below event sections for booking information on events at the festival.

We have the following offers available:

  • 50% off all events with valid student ID
  • Companion seats 75% discount at all performances
  • 20% off when purchasing 3 or more Lit Fest events in one transaction. Free events and workshops not applicable on this offer.

Box Office: 02380 711833
Book Tickets here.

She Says | Tongue Fu

She Says | 10th March | 8pm | £10
Tongue Fu | 11th March | 8pm | £10 
MAST Mayflower Studios, Southampton

She Says

Join comedy creator, Holly Spillar and jump into a International Women’s Day special edition of the SHE SAYS cabaret. A feminist frenzy of burlesque, comedy, theatre, music and poetry. After two sold out shows at Bournemouth's Black Cherry Theatre SHE SAYS is bringing this unique night out to MAST Studios, Southampton.

Tongue Fu

ArtfulScribe and MAST Mayflower Studios present Tongue Fu as part of LIT FEST 2023, a literary weekend takeover festival, in partnership with the Department of English at University of Southampton and Art Asia, supported by Arts Council England.

At Tongue Fu poets, writers and storytellers take to the stage to perform live, amplified by the quick-witted improvisers of the Tongue Fu band.

LIT FEST 2023 Tongue Fu will feature acclaimed guests, T.S Eliot prize-winning poet & musician, Anthony Joseph as well as Cecilia Knapp & Kareem Parkins-Brown, plus local writers and the Tongue Fu band.

Box Office: 
02380 711833
Book Tickets Here

10th - 12th March | £10 | Limited Places Available

Masterclass 1: Writing Personal Metaphors with Kandace Siobhan Walker
Sat 11 March 9.30am - 11:00am | £10.00

Renew your approach to metaphor with Kandace Siobhan Walker (Bad Betty Press, editor at bath magg). Focusing on vocabularies and terminologies, this session will give you the tools to craft new and personal metaphors.

Masterclass 2: Writing Sonnets with Anthony Joseph
Sat 11 March 2023, 11.30am - 1:00pm | £10

Write sonnets with T.S Eliot prize winner, Anthony Joseph. Explore new approaches to the sonnet form and unlock new ways to hone your poetry.

Masterclass 3: How To Play A Poem Like A Song with Tongue Fu
Sat 11 March 2023, 1.30pm - 3:00pm | £10

Have you ever wanted to put your poems to music, but not sure where to start? Or maybe you already write to music, but would like to further explore the relationship between the two? This performance masterclass aims to get all participants comfortable with writing and performing with music – led by Chris Redmond of Tongue Fu.

Masterclass 4: Translating Poetry: Aims into Practice with Mamata Nanda
Sun 12 March 2023, 9.30am - 11:00am | £10

Join Mamata Nanda in a translation poetry masterclass, which will inspire approaches to translating work, playing with structure, punctuation and format.

Box Office: 02380 711833
Book Tickets Here

Small Press Showcases

Penned in the Margins, Bad Betty, Modern Poetry in Translation
Showcase #1 | 11th March | 3:30pm | £10
Showcase #2 | 12th March | 12:30pm | £5

Small Press Showcase 1: Penned in the Margins & Bad Betty
11th March | 3:30pm - 6pm | £10

LIT FEST 2023 features two of the UK’s most exciting small presses to present their award-winning writers and performers from their roster at MAST Mayflower Studios, for a stacked bill of live-literary goodness!

Penned in the Margins readers: Gail McConnell, Arji Manuelpillai & Meryl Pugh

Bad Betty readers: Kandace Siobhan Walker, Troy Cabida & Eve Esfandiari-Denney

All performers will be reading from their most recent publications - this is THE event to catch the sharpest writing, supported by presses who are breaking the boundaries of literature and spoken word in the UK today.

Small Press Showcase 2: Modern Poetry in Translation
12th March | 12:30pm - 1:30pm | £5

LIT FEST 2023 features the leading magazine of international poetry, Modern Poetry in Translation, to showcase the top poets working in translation today. This showcase seeks to broaden our understandings of poetry and highlight the vital work written beyond the lens of the English language.

This showcase focuses on MPT’s ‘Food’ & ‘Somali’ poetry issues, with contributing writers, Hibaq Osman, Mamata Nanda and Katie Brown reading their works and translations.

Box Office: 02380 711833
Book Tickets Here

Free Events
Community-focused free events over LIT FEST 2023 weekend 
Keynote: Writing from the Outside In

What does the story of literature look like when we tell it from the perspective of writers on the edge as well as in the centre? Join members of the English department at University of Southampton who will celebrate outsider writers from Lynette Roberts to Mina Loy, from Christina Stead to Stevie Smith. Come and hear how some of the most distinctive and singular literary voices can help us rethink contemporary writing and what a career as a writer might look like today. This session will be chaired by Will May, with contributions from Sarah Hayden,  Stephanie Jones, and Peter Middleton. 

Derek Jarman Anthology Launch
Fri 10 March 2023 | 7.15pm

John Hansard Gallery and ArtfulScribe present a selection of life writings, read by authors included in Modern Nature: An Anthology, edited by Joanna Barnard. This event is free to attend but the event is ticketed and tickets must be booked in advance.

Write A Note
Sat 11 March 2023 | 6.30pm

Write a Note, in association with ArtfulScribe and led by Anita Foxall, offers a platform for poetry, spoken word, and live literature to find new audiences in a warm, and supportive environment at the MAST Mayflower Studios. This LIT FEST 2023 edition features select sets from the Write A Note community.

Swapanocharini: 'Wanderer of my dreams' - Tagore and his Women
Sun 12 March 2023 | 11.00am

To celebrate International Women's Day 2023 Art Asia, ArtfulScribe and Robimoy invite you to celebrate the different facets of women as seen through the work of Rabindranath Tagore (1861-1941) - a poet, writer, playwright, composer, philosopher, painter and social reformer. He was the first non-European writer to be awarded the Nobel Prize for literature in 1913.

Join us for a thought-provoking event featuring poems, dance, and music around the theme of women, portraying their strength, dignity, and vulnerability in a world where such attributes were not commonplace.

ArtfulScribe Community Showcase
Sun 12 March 2023 | 3.00pm

The ArtfulScribe Community Showcase brings together writers from across ArtfulScribe's literary development programmes for this intergenerational showcase, celebrating their collaborative process and new writing from this year.

Box Office: 02380 711833
Book Tickets Here

We work with people from primary years to life's later stages. Help us help others make the most of life's opportunities by contributing to our cause to improve literacy levels in Hampshire and Dorset. Thank you.
If you'd like your events or opportunities for writers in the region to feature in our newsletter or social media, please drop a line to


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