Arrive engaged and prepare to leave inspired as we host a celebration of poetry and the written word, featuring a selection of the UK’s brightest upcoming artists.

Inspired by the mehfils of old, which invited small groups into the homes and palaces of South Asian nobility to experience live entertainment, this annual and intimate event promises to stay with you long after the evening draws to a close.

Compere Kate Fox guides you through an unforgettable spoken-word showcase, featuring a headlining performance from John Hegley, and appearances by Joelle Taylor, John Siddique, Jo Brandon and Jason Allen-Paisant.

To book for this event you’ll be taken through to the Bradford Theatres website. Please note that the £2 booking fee will be deducted at the point at sale.

About The Poets

Jason Allen-Paisant

Jason Allen-Paisant is the author of Thinking with Trees (Carcanet Press, 2021). His work has appeared in numerous magazines and has been featured on the BBC. He lives in Leeds with his partner and two daughters.

Jo Brandon

Jo Brandon was born in 1986 and is based in West Yorkshire. Jo has a pamphlet, Phobia, and two full-length collections: The Learned Goose (2015) and Cures (2021) all with Valley Press. Jo’s poetry has been published widely and she was Bradford Literature Festival’s first Digital Poet in Residence.

John Siddique

John Siddique has dedicated his life to honouring the authentic in our human experience. He is the author of a number of books ranging from poetry and memoir to non-fiction. His teachings and writings have featured in Time Magazine, The Guardian, Granta, on CNN and the BBC. Signposts of The Spiritual Journey is his eighth book.

John Hegley

John Hegley has performed his words, sung and spoken, in just about every live setting you can imagine: from schools to prisons, the British Library to Glastonbury Festival. John has produced ten books of poetry, two CDs and one mug. He is noted for his writing about such exciting topics as dog hair, potatoes and handkerchiefs. He is an occasional DJ, dancer and workshop leader using drawing, poetry, music and movement.

Joelle Taylor

Joelle Taylor is the author of four collections of poetry. Her newest collection C+NTO & Othered Poems (June 2021) was the subject of a Radio 4 arts documentary Butch. She is a co-curator and host of Out-Spoken Live, resident at the Southbank Centre, and the current editor of Out-Spoken Press.