I’ll be here all week (and next)

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Last night was the opening night of Not Much To Tell You at The Sue Benner Theatre, Metro Arts. It was a wonderful start to the season with a really great crowd and a good feeling in the room. I’m looking forward to doing it all again tonight, and then Friday, and then Saturday, and then Wednesday-to-Saturday next week! Tickets are still available from metroarts.com.au, or you can buy at the door tonight.

Here is a picture of my super hi-tech set:

I also had the pleasure of being interviewed by Sally Browne for yesterday’s Courier Mail:

‘Scuse me while I go laminate my copy. #sorrynotsorry

Not Much To Tell You is a part of the program for the most poetic weekend in Brisbane’s calendar – the Queensland Poetry Festival! QPF has its opening night tomorrow at the Judith Wright Centre, to usher in the greatest poetry festival in the southern hemisphere! LET’S HEAR IT FOR POETRY.

I’ll be giving my top picks for QPF on Metro Arts’ Instagram, so keep an eye out for that. Or you could just pick up a QPF program and throw a dart at literally any part of it, and I guarantee it will be good.

Oh Fringe World!

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It’s the final week of Fringe World and I am having more fun than a hipster at Bogan Bingo. We had a great season of Not Much To Tell You at The Blue Room Theatre, and although I very much enjoyed the show run, it was a relief to wake up on the final morning and not have to wonder about ticket sales.

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After bumping out my final show, I needed to find a way to unwind after a week of shows. I left The Blue Room Theatre thinking, food? Eat everything in Northbridge? Or maybe collapse onto one of my friends? Then, we walked past robot busker guy, and I had my answer.

In my downtime after Not Much To Tell You finished, I have been soaking up everything Fringe has to offer. Most particularly, many shows by many very fine and talented artists. I’ve just come from Brian Finkelstein’s First Day Off In A Long Time, which was a masterful example of honest, vulnerable storytelling, and pretty damn brutal. I guess any story that takes place on a suicide hotline is going to be brutal. But Brian’s a master at keeping the tension just bearable – and he’s bloody funny.

Last night I caught the Lords of Luxury and had my biggest laughs so far this Fringe. These four suited-up gentlemen had me gripping my sides like an idiot. It turns out what I really like in my sketch comedy is absurdist pop culture references, deadpanning, and wigs (see: Slumber Party Time Travel).

Adam Peter Scott’s Book Fight was an education in Stephen King’s back catalogue. Ostensibly a game show where panel guests answer questions about books, it was really a competition to see who could bring the most snark. To my mind, the night’s winner was burlesque performer Sugar du Joure for her handling of Adam Peter Scott, who kept groping (word choice intentional) for jokes about her ample neckline. (Scott, staring: “My mind’s gone blank.” Sugar: “It’s always like that.”)

A sweetly absurd adventure through dystopia was She Was Probably Not A Robot. Delightful, silly, and shot through with an unexpected vein of poetry. Stuart Bowden had the audience on side from the start, and pulled us into his cartoonish, faintly threatening world with ease. I’m a heart-fan of dystopian storytelling anyway, but Bowden’s spandex antics won me over the rest of the way. Also, great beard.

Fringe World, you are the bomb.

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Snaps from the Kaleidoscope Tightrope

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I’ve just come from a bloody awesome night of poetry, music and spoken word, and like a total nerd I decided to immediately blog about it. I was lucky enough to be one of the artists performing at the thing – called the Kaleidoscope Tightrope (which is fiendishly hard to spell) – but I also took a few snaps during the rest of the show. Here they are.

Props to Scott Sneddon aka Darkwing Dubs aka Scotty aka What actually is your name now? for organising such a fun and varied night of performance. Highlights included Matt Hsu jamming on his trumpet from atop a table, Lucy Fox and Laura Trenery showing us their mad tatts, and James Halloran singing a vaudeville opera.

Thanks to Metro Arts for the venue and Brisbane Festival for being awesome. If you haven’t been to any Brisbane Festival events yet, it’s on until the 28th September. Get involved! Metro Arts will be hosting another poetry night next Wednesday, as part of their Basement Late Night series, curated by another differently excellent local poet. Seriously there is so much to do in this city. I can’t keep up.

Sleep time. Good night.

PS. I’ve only just started using a DSLR (embarrassingly, seeing I work at a camera shop), and this was my first foray into low-light shooting. So, if any photographers out there have any tips/comments on how I went, my comment section is open!

Live from the Denmark Festival of Voice: bucket list TICKED.

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This weekend I am writing to you from the Festival of Voice in Denmark (not the country). Denmark is a lovely little town tucked away in the south-west of Western Australia, nestled amongst forests – the perfect place to wander around listening to choirs, bands and singers (and even a poet or two).

Down by the river in Denmark, WA.

Down by the river in Denmark, WA.

I’m here with my friend and fellow poet Kate Wilson; we are both performing in the festival, so I am very lucky to get to share my first solo-festival-show experience with a close friend. I also get to emcee her show tonight, which is a pretty great honour!

This weekend I have ticked two major things off my bucket list: I performed my first solo show in a festival (at the Denmark RSL Hall, rock ‘n’ roll). Secondly – and more terrifyingly – I sang. A song I wrote. In public. For actual people. And I survived, hurrah!

I’m selling merch here at the fest – it’s a little zine of one of my more popular poems, ‘What Is She’ (pictured below). I’ve hand-written each stanza of the poem in typography, inspired by kinetic poems. They’re also available for sale online – DM me on Twitter (@kplyley) or leave a message on here if you would like to buy a copy. They’re only $4 each! (Free postage within Australia. International peeps – message me and we can work something out.)

Festival program and merch.

Festival program and merch.

That’s all I have time to write, as there are still more shows to see, gigs to emcee, and deadlines for more future projects coming up … Exciting things! See you back in Brisbane, blogosphere.

Runner-up in WA Poetry Festival SLAM!

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Photo courtesy of Allan Boyd (2011)

Last night was the WA Poetry Fest’s Slam. It was a fantastic night with an entertaining mix of old hats and new faces. We had an impressive line-up of 20 poets, but most notable were Janet Jackson‘s gorgeous pagan tribute to the moon, and James Hanlon’s touching tribute to his dad, which he ended with a big ol’ dad hug (Mr Hanlon was in the crowd).

And of course, DVS‘s rap ‘Pixel Junkie’ was fun and thought-provoking, and took out first place. DVS is devious indeed, and one of these days I’m actually going to beat that guy in a slam. One day …

But it was pretty sweet to take out second place with my slam of ‘Yeah Orright Princess’, and rack up the highest score I’ve ever gotten in a slam.

Bloody good night.