School of the Arts summer show successes and Angry Planet commemorative booklet

Beginning on Tuesday 11th June, English and Creative Writing at the University of Northampton School of the Arts hosted three special events as part of the School of the Arts Summer Show.  All of these events were well attended by individuals from both within and outside of the School of the Arts.

Garth McArthur and Charles Bennett

Garth McArthur and Charles Bennett

In conversation with Dr Charles Bennett, Learning Manager at the BBC Singers, Garth McArthur discussed the history of the BBC’s unique in-house professional choir; writing and bringing librettos to life as well as the challenges and excitement of producing the Angry Planet Prom.  Garth also gave complimentary BBC Singers CDs to the audience gathered.

Warhol illustrated 'Vainglory' cover

Warhol illustrated ‘Vainglory’ cover

Subject leader for English, Dr Richard Canning revealed the pain-staking editorial processes and publishing pragmatics behind bringing Ronald Firbank’s Vainglory into a new Penguin Classics edition.  He also recommended that people read Alan Hollinghurst’s Oxford M.Litt thesis and directed his audience to a lesser known Andy Warhol illustration of Vainglory.

Finally, Alan Smith was joined by Alistair Fruish (Writer-in-Residence at HMP Leicester) and Steve Gadd (The Anne Frank Trust) to reflect on the rewarding but tough realities of teaching in prison.  Alistair reminded the audience that the Writers in Prison Network has undergone substantial funding cuts, and Steve told audience members about the experience of Holocaust survivors speaking in prisons.  For while a central aim of the Anne Frank Trust is to promote empathy and tolerance and while recognising the enormous historical and circumstantial differences, Steve also suggested that for many prisoner’s these visits by survivors acted as a stark and hopeful reminder that rebuilding life after incarceration is a possibility.

Alan Smith, Alistair Fruish, Steve Gadd

Alan Smith, Alistair Fruish, Steve Gadd.

My thanks go out to all our speakers and audience members who made these talks at the University of Northampton School of the Arts such a success.  As an additional treat, please find attached an Angry Planet commemorative booklet designed by illustrator and long-time Charles Bennett collaborator, Diane Griffiths.  Charles will be distributing this booklet as part of his visit to Summer Fields School, Oxford on Friday 28th July.

Angry Planet commemorative booklet [PDF]

About Dr Larissa Allwork

Dr Larissa Allwork worked at the University of Northampton School of the Arts (May 2012 - August 2015). She also participated in Professor Janet Wilson's EU-Marie Curie funded Constructions of Home and Belonging ITN. She continues to be affiliated to Dr Sonya Andermahr's Working Group for Interdisciplinary Research in Trauma, Narrative and Performance.

Posted on June 28, 2013, in Events, School of the Arts and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.

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