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From poetry to rapping… Islington’s celebration of words

01 June, 2018

• TODAY (Friday) is the start of the fantastic Word2018 Festival – Islington’s month-long celebration of the power of words and how reading and writing transform lives – and I’d like to invite all residents to get involved.

From dance, art, poetry and circus sessions, to workshops and talks, there really is something for everyone –  and most events are free.

Many events are taking place in Islington’s excellent libraries, and the event is a partnership between libraries and heritage services, arts service, All Change and the Free Word Centre.

Today, the festival launches with “Book End No1”, an event at The Free Word Centre with Living Lyrics – an exhibition of portraits of Key Changes artists and a live performance.

Some other highlights include:

• On Wednesday, the Mayor will open Islington’s Word Garden, in Kings Square Gardens. Designed by the older people at St Luke’s Centre, and working with All Change, it is inspired by memories of the park and local area.

• Celebrating Refugee Week, the Essence of Welcome exhibition at South Library, will see school workshops with in-house writer Sita Brahmachari and artist Jane Ray at South and N4 libraries.

• A celebration of all things Arsenal FC with poet Paul Lyalls, and Grandads, Dads and Lads.

• Commemorating the 250th anniversary of the world’s very first “circus” in London, there will be a series of events for Circus 250. Events will include The Clerkenwell King of Clowns – Joseph Grimaldi exhibition at Finsbury Library, and a new commission from Upswing working with All Change’s young parents group Inspire! to create a new show, “A is for Adventure”, for young families.

• Rapping, singing and handstands during Drag Queen Story Times, with Cookie MonStar.

• Specially-commissioned projects to encourage residents of all ages to develop their enjoyment of reading and writing through creativity.

• Walks with Library2Library on Saturdays followed by family activities, the launch of Reading Well, Remembering the 4,000 talk and Futures in the Making workshop

Throughout Word2018, there will be contributions from extraordinary voices, in person, in print and via Instagram and Twitter. A team of poets will respond, react and create a new body of work @wordislington #Words4Word

The festival runs until June 30. For more information or for details of all events visit @WordIslington or and view the brochure. Alternatively, pick up a copy in one of Islington’s 10 libraries and other venues.

Executive member for economic development, Islington Council 


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