QPF2017 Distant Voices presents
What is a Poem Worth?
Judith Wright Centre of Contemporary Arts
Free event, all welcome
To close this year's festival, QPF2017 presents a special event. 'What is a Poem Worth?' is poet Kerry Loughrey’s performative report of research findings. It is a stanzaic set of symbolic moments and uses direct reporting of poetry value from the Melbourne poetry community and the author’s own responses to produce a multi-voiced reading of results. Driven by the rhythmic insistence of Whitman, Ginsberg and Australian bush balladry, it explores the human experience of access to value, to being of value. It is more poem than play, more play than recitation. It celebrates the call of the page, the voice of poetry, the sounds of answers. For QPF2017, the work has been adapted for two players in its Queensland debut also featuring Alison Richards.
“Kerry Loughrey is a vital and fascinating talent… Her words left me spinning … 'The poem is the answerer, the poet is the listener' Loughrey offers. Destabilising, contradictory and hard to locate though her poetry is, Loughrey’s work has a simple heart-felt message within it: poems are precious, and she exhorts against the contemporary obsession with celebrity and personality over the creative product itself.” (Amelia Swan, Arts Hub, 2015)
Kerry Loughrey’s poetry has been published in journals and anthologies for over 30 years. Poetry in performance prizes include both the 2011 and 2012 Doris Leadbetter Melbourne Poetry Cup. Eaglemont Press released her collection, You Shot My Dog, in 2012. Her poetry has also been broadcast on 3RRR radio and ABC TV. In 2015 Arts Hub reviewer Amelia Swann awarded five out of five stars to the presentation of her PhD thesis What is a poem worth? at La Mama Courthouse, Melbourne.
Alison Richards is a theatre maker and academic whose practice connects word, voice, sound, dramaturgy/composition, physical and object theatre. Alison has worked across Australia since the 1970s as a director, writer, dramaturg and performer in the professional theatre and in community, and more recently as a respected scholar and researcher in the field of Theatre and Performance. Alison is an Adjunct Senior Lecturer at Monash University, a Life Member of Footscray Community Arts Centre and Theatre Works, St Kilda and an Artistic Associate and Board member of Black Hole Theatre. Her major cross-disciplinary work The Book of Revelations had its premiere season at 45 Downstairs, Melbourne in July.