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Teignmouth Poetry Festival - Song and Dance Exhibition

From Saturday 16th March, TAAG will host a two-week exhibition of artwork and accompanying poetry.  This will be the 6th consecutive year that Teignmouth Poetry Festival has filled the galleries with collaborative work – the result of many months in which visual artists and poets have focused together on one particular theme.  This year it’s ‘Song & Dance’ – expect vibrant colours, movement, lyricism…

All five previous exhibitions have been spectacularly successful; visitors to Teignmouth, staying in town for the Festival, have been hugely impressed with the quality of work on show and by the Arts Quarter generally.

On the opening night, Sat 16th March, Teignmouth’s own shanty crew, the Back Beach Boyz, will raise the roof in the Festival’s first Fringe event.  And on Saturday 23rd March the Festival itself comes to TAAG when many of the poets involved will read the poems on display; this free event was one of last year’s highlights.

Full details of the Poetry Festival, which is supported by National Lottery funding through Arts Council England and the Town Council, are on the website . Tickets for all Festival events are available from the Teignmouth Pavilions box office.


‘Song & Dance’ is the theme of a two-week exhibition, part of this year’s Teignmouth Poetry Festival.  It opens on March 16th in TAAG’s galleries. 

 The show is the result of a six-month collaboration between 15 invited artists and ten Devon poets.  This format has worked brilliantly in previous years: Festival visitors from all over the UK have been hugely impressed with the quality of work on show, the creative buzz in the Arts Quarter, and with TAAG itself.  

 Festival organisers are keen to promote the TAAG connection: on Sat 23rd March an appreciative audience will pack the galleries as poets perform the written work which accompanies each exhibit.  In some cases the poets have written to the artwork, in others it is the artists who have responded to particular pieces of poetry. There are guest writers too: several of the best-known names in British poetry have contributed work on the ‘Song & Dance’ theme and have been invited to read at this free and unticketed event.

 A week earlier, on Sat 16th March, a Fringe event will prove that you can’t have ‘Song & Dance’ without music: Teignmouth’s own shanty crew, the Back Beach Boyz, will raise the roof at the exhibition’s opening party.    

 Joint curators Virginia Griem and Graham Burchell are both artists as well as successful poets.  Graham is confident the visual art will have it’s own immediate impact on visitors.  He says, “At previous exhibitions with this format we’ve noticed that people stay in the gallery much longer than usual.  Taking time to read the poetry alongside the images and sculptures deepens  the experience.”

 And this year could be the brightest and liveliest exhibition yet.  ‘Song & Dance’ has inspired images and artifacts ranging from flamenco to ballet via a Ska band, caged songbirds, home-made clogs and sheet music.  The poets, presented with this visual cornucopia, have responded with imaginative leaps: the singing of overhead cables in the wind, village dancers in a Breugel painting, a girl in a zoetrope...  The result will be an enthralling show of colour and movement. 

 Full details of the Poetry Festival, which is supported by the Town Council  and Arts Council England, are in the 12-page brochure available in TAAG and many town outlets.  It can also be downloaded from  Tickets for all events are available from Teignmouth Pavilions box office.

 The Artists: Rachael Bennett, Jane Branch, Roger Dennis, Liz Diamond, Anne Doggett, Rose Ensor, Alan Gregory, Virginia Griem, Angela Holmes, Tony Homer, Claire Jenkinson, Migglet, Shan Roberts, Jacqui Thomson, Avenda Burnell Walsh

 The Poets: Veronica Aaronson, Helen Boyles, Graham Burchell, Ian Royce Chamberlain, Roger Dennis, Liz Diamond, Virginia Griem, Jean Grimsey, Jennie Osborne, Marc Woodward.

 Guest Poets include: Roger McGough, Fiona Benson, Martin Figura, Kim Moore, Brian Patten, John Greening, Gill McEvoy and others.

Click image to enlarge..

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Saturday 16 March to Friday 29 March

Art inspired by Poetry / poetry inspired by Art

Exhibition on a theme of ‘Song &d Dance’

Saturday 16 March - 6.00 - 8.00pm

Song & Dance Exhibition launch including songs of the sea from the Back Beach Boyz

Saturday 23 March 4:30 - 5:30pm

Reading - Art and Poetry - Song & Dance’

This informal reading was a highlight of last year’s Festival.

Many voices - some well known, others less so - will speak from all corners of the galleries, confronting or conversing with over 40 artworks on display. Collaborating on a theme of ‘Song & Dance’ an invited group of visual artists and poets have ben working towards the Festival’s own exhibition. Artists have responded to new poems donated by our Festival guest poets and others, and thge invited poets have been writing to new work, both 2D and 3D, from the artists. Be prepared for an hour of sheer delight.

Earlier Event: March 9
Multimedia Art Show
Later Event: March 30
What about Water?