Crowdfunding campaigns for Hidden Door Festival and the Poetry Circus

Hidden Door is “a not for profit arts festival that takes place in abandoned or hidden places in Edinburgh,” and this year “will be transforming another venue and providing a unique mix of visual art, music, theatre, dance and cinema,” including a programme of poetry films from Filmpoem, from Friday May 22nd through Saturday May 30th. If you’d like to help support them, they’re looking for sponsors, and they’re also trying to raise £8500 through a crowdfunding campaign.

What we are trying to do is incredibly ambitious – 60 visual arts installations, 20 theatre productions, a cinema programme and live music programme every night. It’s a chance for emerging and established artists to do something completely new, to push their creativity to the limits and welcome new audiences in the thousands to be inspired by the extraordinary world that we will create for these 9 days.

We need to raise around £80k in total purely from ticket & bar sales to the festival and our own fundraising efforts. This all goes towards regenerating the site (an incredible but currently derelict secret courtyard location in the Grassmarket!) and covering the essential costs of putting on the festival – such as generators and electricity, materials for the installations, equipment for music & theatre performances, projectors, toilets, licenses and everything else involved in putting a festival on in a new and disused venue like this.

Check it out.

Expanded Poetry Circus could include film

California poet Nicelle Davis is on a mission to make poetry events more vital and more carnivalesque. Regular Moving Poems readers will recognize her as a collaborator on videopoems with Cheryl Gross and Anita Clearfield and an advocate for the genre generally. But her passion for finding fun and innovative ways to spread her love of poetry extends well beyond film. For several years now, she’s been doing community poetry-promotion events under the umbrella of the Living Poetry Project, and with the publication of her latest book, In the Circus of You, she felt inspired to launch her most ambitious project yet: a real, live poetry circus on February 28th at the People’s Park in Los Angeles, featuring a poetry merry-go-round, circus acts, kid crafts, and magic shows. It was, by all accounts, a huge success.

Now Nicelle’s looking ahead: “To fund a Summer of Circus!” Depending on the response to her crowd-funding campaign, the Poetry Circus could come to Colorado, Utah, Minneapolis, and San Diego — as well as making a return visit to Los Angeles in September. And “between these larger events I would like to host ‘sideshows’ which I call the GWHO Poetry Parties; the GWHO Poetry Parties are geeky burlesque-like shows that feature poetry focused on the freaky aspects of being human.” It all sounds pretty amazing, but what about poetry film? Nicelle responded in an email:

SURE! We can show films at the Poetry Circus… in fact I know just the Circus Theater for a poetry film festival. I love the idea of layering film with performance. Something like this or this explained like this.

The basic philosophy behind the Poetry Circus is very attractive indeed:

The Poetry Circus is part workshop, community outreach, performance, ride, dance, and creations. This community focused and driven event blurs the line between performer and audience to allow everyone the chance to run away and join the circus.

By presenting poetry in an alternative venue, the egalitarian characteristics of poetry are amplified. Poetry IS for everyone, regardless of where we come from or how we got there; we all process and understand the world through metaphor.

Read more (and consider making a donation).

Dave Bonta

Dave is the founder of Moving Poems, and posts videos for his own poems (along with lots of other stuff) at Via Negativa. Here's a bio.

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