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An Evening with Katrina Porteous

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This event series is part poetry reading, part open mic - and the guest poet and open mic theme change each month!

About this Event

"Go to the poets, they will speak to thee", our 2021 contemporary poetry reading series, is curated and hosted by poet Kim Moore. We will be listening to what poets have to say about our turbulent times, and how poetry can cross borders to challenge, delight and inspire us. Each event in the series is part reading, part open mic – and the theme of the open mic changes every month!

William Wordsworth often protested against the impact of modern science, but it is less well-known that he also speculated that science might provide new possibilities for poetry. In his preface to Lyrical Ballads, he writes “The remotest discoveries of the Chemist, the Botanist, or Mineralogist, will be as proper objects of the Poet’s art as any upon which it can be employed”. Our open mic theme this month is to bring a poem which explores or engages with science in some way.

Our guest poet is Katrina Porteous, who will be performing a World Premiere of ‘Under the Ice’, an immersive half hour performance combining Katrina’s poetry with electronic music by Peter Zinovieff. ‘Under the Ice’ takes the listener on a journey to the unseen world beneath Antarctica’s ice. ‘Under the Ice’ is created as part of NUSTEM’S Exploring Extreme Environments project at Northumbria University, supported by STFC. You can find out more information about this exciting performance below.

Under the Ice

'Under the Ice', poetry by Katrina Porteous and electronic music by Peter Zinovieff, is the World Premiere of an immersive half hour performance, which takes the listener on a journey to the unseen world beneath Antarctica’s ice: gigantic mountains, valleys, lakes and volcanoes, more difficult to visit than outer space. Intended for the non-scientist, it explores the 'remote sensing' techniques used to investigate this secret landscape and to measure the movement of glaciers -- in particular Thwaite's Glacier, crucial to the understanding of climate change. Scientists studying Thwaite's observe Earth's smallest and largest phenomena: microscopic clues in the bedrock provide evidence of the glacier's advance and retreat over vast timescales; air bubbles in ice cores reveal the composition of the atmosphere over a million years; radar and satellite data supply information about the dynamics of the glacier and the ice sheet which feeds it. Peter Zinovieff's music is derived from real sound sampled from Antarctic glaciers. 'Under the Ice' is created as part of NUSTEM's Exploring Extreme Environments project at Northumbria University, supported by STFC.

How to book and attend

Please read our guide to booking and attending online events before you purchase a ticket.

Email wordsworthreadingseries@outlook.com for an open mic spot after you have booked a ticket through the Eventbrite link on this page.

This event is booked on Eventbrite and takes place as a Zoom Webinar. If you have bought a ticket and signed up to the open mic you will need to have a working microphone. You do not have to switch on your webcam but are welcome to do so if you are comfortable. You will only be able to share audio and/or video with the audience during the open mic segment of the event.

Five free tickets are available for each session for those experiencing financial hardship that would otherwise not be able to attend. This is on a first come first served basis with no questions asked about your situation. Please email Hannah at h.catterall@wordsworth.org.uk.

Live captions will be provided by Otter.

Photograph of Katrina Porteous © Tony Griffiths

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