An exhilarating evening of poetry, music and dance celebrating an iconic Harlem poet

1st March . 7:30pm . 90 minutes, no interval
Tickets £8 - £15
Due to unforeseen circumstances and an immovable filming schedule in Malta, Paapa Essiedu will no longer be able to join us to read the poetry at Dreams Deferred. Luckily, we are thrilled to announce that Kayo Chingonyi, the celebrated poet and compelling reader of poetry, will be joining us instead. Kayo imbues every word he reads with a depth and a clarity rarely found in readers, and we are delighted that he will be joining us.

We are also pleased to announce that novelist and critic Diran Adebayo will be joining us for the event to introduce the life and work of Langston Hughes. Described by The Observer as 'sparklingly intelligent', he is a novelist and cultural critic with considerable clout.

What happens to a dream deferred?

The epicentre of Harlem Renaissance, Langston Hughes’ rhythmic, urgent poetry empowered a generation of new writers, with an aftershock that still reverberates today. His work was full of music and dance, and described the Black American experience over decades. Characterised by narratives of empowerment and a belief in humanity, he celebrated Black identity in a unique and powerful way.

Exploring Hughes' life and artistic potency, Poet in the Cityjoins forces with electric and progressive dance organisation East London Dance, and the exhilarating brass and woodwind ensemble Kinetika Bloco to remember this remarkable voice through music, dance and poetry, creating a celebration worthy of a cultural king. Poetry will be performed by Kayo Chingonyi, with East London Dance presenting dance by choreographer Jade Hackett.

Kayo Chingonyi is a fellow of the Complete Works programme for diversity and quality in British Poetry and the author of two pamphlets, Some Bright Elegance (Salt, 2012) and The Colour of James Brown’s Scream (Akashic, 2016). His first full-length collection, Kumukanda, will be published in June 2017 with Chatto & Windus. As well as being widely published in journals and anthologies, Kayo has been invited to read from his work at venues and events across the UK and internationally. He was Associate Poet at the Institute of Contemporary Arts from Autumn 2015 to Spring 2016.

Jade Hackett is a choreographer and dancer. She creates thought-provoking and politically relevant dance work which pushes the boundaries of hip-hop dance theatre whilst addressing key issues relating to black diaspora.

Diran Adebayo is a novelist and cultural critic best known for his chronicling of Afro-British lives, and his distinctive, rhythmic prose. His debut, the picaresque Some Kind of Black, won him numerous awards, was longlisted for the Booker Prize, and is now a Virago Modern Classic. As a critic, he's written extensively in the national press and appeared on shows such as Newsnight, The Culture Show, and the Today Programme. He teaches Creative Writing at Kingston University, and credits Langston Hughes as being the first writer to make him cry as an adult.

East London Dance is the leading producer of creative dance experiences for the people of East London and beyond, bringing dance to people and people to dance. Collaborating widely, they produce ambitious performances alongside projects to get all ages dancing and uncover diverse artists, develop their careers and watch them fly. http://www.eastlondondance.org/

Kinetika Bloco is a performance group with an exuberant mix of young brass and woodwind players, drummers, steel pan and dynamic dancers all in costume. They draw influences from the Caribbean, Brazil, West and Southern Africa, New Orleans jazz, Funk and Hip Hop, headlining at the Roundhouse and representing the UK at Beijing Olympic Festival. http://www.kinetikabloco.co.uk/

Poet in the City provides a dynamic platform for contemporary and classic poetry, curating imaginative events which bring poetry to life for a 21st century audience. Through our work, we have fostered a genuine and growing appetite for accessible, challenging and inspiring poetry performances. http://www.poetinthecity.co.uk/
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