StAnza reveals headline names for 2019 festival

Caroline Bird ' shortlisted for the TS Eliot and Ted Hughes awards last year ' will be one of the headline poets at StAnza in March 2019.
Caroline Bird ' shortlisted for the TS Eliot and Ted Hughes awards last year ' will be one of the headline poets at StAnza in March 2019.

StAnza, Scotland’s International Poetry Festival, has unveiled some of the headline acts which will make up another impressive programme for 2019.

In keeping with its reputation of being a truly international affair, next year’s programme will not disappoint, featuring poets from all over the world who will travel to join many more from Scotland and the rest of the UK.

The annual festival will take place from Wednesday, March 6, until Sunday, March 10, in St Andrews.

Among the headline voices performing at next year’s annual festival is poet, artist and film-maker Imtiaz Dharker, awarded the Queen’s Gold Medal for poetry in 2014.

She is joined by award-winning Jamaican poet and essayist Ishion Hutchinson, and Welsh poet, playwright, columnist and editor Menna Elfyn.

Also on the programme for 2019 is Caroline Bird, shortlisted for both the TS Eliot Award and the Ted Hughes Award in 2017.

StAnza festival director Eleanor Livingstone said: “It is fantastic to be revealing such a diverse and talented line-up of headline acts, creating a programme which is fresh and diverse for next year’s festival.

“We look forward to revealing 
further details of our exciting 2019 programme over the coming months.”

Mairi Kidd, interim head of literature, languages and publishing at Creative Scotland, added: “StAnza’s strong programming has won it a place at the forefront of Europe’s contemporary poetry scene, bringing poets from all across the world together with well-loved and emerging Scottish voices for a hugely exciting festival with cultural exchange at its heart.

“2019’s themes of Off the Page and Another Place perfectly capture what makes StAnza special, and the headline acts of Imtiaz Dharker, Menna Elfyn and Caroline Bird promise another rich and diverse programme. Live literature is a hugely powerful way of bringing people together and StAnza has really taken that role to heart.”

StAnza traditionally focuses on two themes which interweave with each other to give each annual festival its own unique flavour. Next year’s themes are Off the Page and Another Place. The dedicated language focus for 2019 will be the Mediterranean and Beyond.

Dozens of poets will be taking part in StAnza, along with many musicians, visual artists and filmmakers bringing the town of St Andrews alive with poetry, music and art for five days in March.