Messums celebrates the spoken word

MESSUMS Wiltshire, the inspirational contemporary arts centre at the 700 year old Tisbury tithe barn, celebrates poetry and the voice in the Festival of the Spoken Word weekend, from 5th to 7th July.

The opening night poetry performance features poet, playwright and actor Ben Norris (pictured) and music by singer-songwriter and spoken word performer Jade Cuttle.

Twice national poetry slam champion Ben Norris has appeared everywhere from Latitude Festival to the Proms at the Royal Albert Hall. His debut solo show, The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Family, won the 2015 IdeasTap Underbelly Award at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival before touring the UK and Australia, and his first short film, commissioned by Channel 4, was nominated for a Royal Television Society Award.

Jade has performed her poetry on BBC Radio 3 and in association with BBC Proms, and has been commissioned to write for other BBC podcasts such as celebrating Shakespeare’s 400th anniversary through song. She has twice won the Foyle Young Poet Award, and had first place in the 2014 BBC Proms’ Poetry Competition.

Saturday’s events include a poetry workshop with Tristram Fane Saunders who will also take part in a panel discussion with New Poets Prize winners later in the day; a talk called Why Speak When You Can Sing?, a talk by Suede bassist and co-founder Matt Osman, who will DJ for a party later in the evening, and performances by Ben Norris. Sugar J and Bump Kin, and stand-up poet Laurie Bolger.

On Sunday, there is a Find Your Voice workshop with  Caroline Goyder.

For more information on the whole programme and Messums’ current exhibitions, visit