Monday, October 31, 2011

Interview with the Goethe Institute, in Gould's Books, Sydney -29/09/2011


Here's a video interview I did recently with Jochen Gutsch for the Goethe Institute in Sydney, at the iconic Gould's books in Newtown. Enjoy

if you are not seeing a playable video window above (click here) for a direct link to the YouTube video

The Goethe Institute is a an organisation operating worldwide as cultural ambassadors for Germany, promoting an exchange of ideas, and Jochen has been interviewing lots of artists around Sydney to this end, and adding clips to their YouTube channel on a regular basis. To check out some of their other videos click here for their YouTube channel.

Or for more info on Goethe in Australia: Goethe Institute Australia

Thanks to Jochen for taking the time to come out on a rainy afternoon and help me kill some time in Newtown, and for editing out parts of the interview where I started awkwardly trying to mount a high horse on a soap box on a slippery slope on a whim. Quite a stunt if one can pull it off, but it turns out some of just aren't that well-balanced.




Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Randall performing Buddy Wakefield's 'Human the Death Dance' + Vipassana meditation -10/10/2011


Well no sooner than I got back home than I'm off again. However this new trip will be the first time in 2.5 years I'm leaving Melbourne without it expressly being to perform poetry. The next ten days will be spent in complete and utter silence undertaking Vipassana meditation, something I've long been curious about, but now after spending so much time plugged into everything and everyone over the last 3 months, I feel like I really need.

I'll be offline, off peak, off tap and off the grid for the next fortnight, trying to get comfortable in my own skin, without trying to get into anyone else' for a while.

Inevitably, it'll be an experience I'll end up writing about. Buddy Wakefield wrote his epic poem 'Human The Death Dance' in his head while doing the same course. I did a cover of this last night at Passionate Tongues in Brunswick, and figured it's a good way to leave off the blog for the next little while. Fittingly, the last thing you'll see is me telling cameraman Steve Smart that that's enough, and to shut the bloody thing off. Enjoy

(click here) if you're not seeing the playable YouTube window.

Also, if you'd like to know more about Vipassana and what it's all about, check out the link below.

Vipassana Meditation

To be honest I'm absolutely terrified by this challenge, but it's nice to be once again in that kind of place/space where one is undertaking something that seems beyond them. This is how I believe I can grow. Wish me luck.


Before I leave Melbourne again I was hoping to do a write up letter thanking every individual who helped me on the 99 day tour I've just completed, but it's only four and a bit hours (mark) before I have to get up and get my arse to the airport again, so that will have to wait now until November. Dang.



Thursday, October 6, 2011

Randall performing 'Something of Value' at TiNA Festival, Newcastle -29/09/2011


if you are not seeing a playable window above click here for a direct link to the YouTube video

Performed at the This is Not Art festival's anti-slam, on September 29th 2011. Camera by the redoubtable Alex Scott.


If you are going to be lonely

find the biggest sky you can
as far from home as possible
to do it under

lift the weight off old skylines
finding new light looking up
lose old aching gravity
overarching starful
as the pinpricks wink you
across this impossible distance

where a couch can't contain you
let that distance stretch you
so much further
than spread eagle across beds
throw yourself into it
scatter life down highways
like you're a string of wreckage
let hurt
spur you on
paving the lines on your face
with a road map's direction and

own your alone

if lonely hunts you
amongst people
in places already known
then run, sucker, run
hide inside a pocket of velocity
an envelope of anonymity
a blanket of trajectory
jumping the void
left by burnt bridges
across the still waters
running too deep for shallow swimmers
to have followed
that loneliness
will work for its prey

if you are going to be lonely
be strange
stubborn as leg cramps
let your skin
carpet your flaws
be so funny
that your punchlines
...can leave black eyes
be so far gone
that your trail
will itself be a tale
bread-crumbed to become
the stuff nourishing a legend

if all your photos of you
are taken arms length
then reach further
than you ever believed you could
and picture yourself


and in reaching around
to sunscreen your own back
develop another flexibility
plans remain in your hands
no splitting this difference
where decisions comes from within
that same sunscreen grease
will suddenly smell like freedom
and release

if caught in a conversational drought
then find your minds own inner dialogue
and talk yourself up a storm

get your years covered in mud
get them buckled and blistered
warped from water-log
snow stained with sand grains
stuck in them
'til you stink
of a long-story's old nostalgia

if you are going to be lonely
at all
do it all
out there
where not a single friendly-fire
word-exchange can steal your flame
torch glow
your life's light
far from home

pursue and imbue
illuminate the solitude
with something of value
a suffering brilliance
finding gains hidden in the pain
on nights alone
that need no account
lose count and let go

...of letting go

and hold on
to those nights' silence
feel it congeal around you
so thick and hard
you can actually grab hold of it
climb the silence
use it as a boost-up
to get over the walls
that followed behind you
into every situation

look out on an horizon
as it curves back too far
in either direction
for the straight
and lame
to ever catch you

under the biggest sky you can find
as far from home as possible
and up on that silent line
even if standing there
all alone
it remains


hell of a view.




Monday, October 3, 2011

Sweetalkers Returns: 9-10-11 (this Sunday)



So it's about sweet-time I did some talking about this month's talkers:


Tariro first got a taste of the theatre performing in 2008, already studying Politics and Anthropology and working as an artist with international and nationally established bands at festivals such as the World Music Festival in Adelaide, Big Day out and the World Music Expo (Arts centre).
Tariro has worked as an actor with the VCA Centre of Cultural Partnerships Horn of Africa program that toured a group devised piece to schools and community centres around Victoria in 2010.
Also a founding member and workshop facilitator of Poetics and Justice, as well as a founding member of Still Waters African Women’s Storytelling Collective, an artist for the African Voices of Carlton Project. At the Australian Poetry Slam she was a state finalist in 2009, and again in 2010, going onto be a national finalist (see YouTube below).

Tariro performing at the National Slam Finals last year:

If you're not seeing a playable video above then click here for a direct YouTube link


The son of Italian immigrants to Australia, he's emerged as one of Australia's most unique spoken word artists from past lives as a classical concert pianist and avant garde jazz musician to teach at an elite Melbourne private school. He performs in a range of styles, from fast rhythmical delivery to slow atmospheric meditation, often with a strong world music influence and critical ironic distance. A fixture on Melbourne's grass roots poetry scene, his has featured at a long list of reading, events and festivals around Australia.

He is a presenter of 3CR's Spoken Word radio programme and appears on Going Down Swinging and Voiceprints CDs as well as the Melbourne Poetry Map website and television programme Red Lobster on Channel 31. He is a winner of the Overload Shelton Lea Award for Best Solo Performance.

If you're not seeing a playable video above then click here for a direct YouTube link


Jessica Alice is a bitter and lusty poetess from old, grey Melbourne town. She performed her poetry for Voiceworks, as well as the Emerging Writers and Overload Poetry Festivals – making her debut at the Abottsford Convent in 2008 and winning The Spinning Room’s performers place in 2010. Jessica presents The Powder Room on Triple R’s Aural Text, and performs her confessional, tragic love poems wherever there is a bar and not necessarily a mic.

Jess performing at the Spinning Room, Melbourne (2009)

If you're not seeing a playable video above then click here for a direct YouTube link


Upon his arrival in Melbourne, Luka Lesson rapidly emerged as our ultimate slam champion. One of only two Australians to ever compete in the Individual World Slam Finals in the US. As co-director of the Centre of Poetics and Justice, Luka's passionate commitment to human rights and social justice in Australia has helped many marginalised young people find their own voice through the workshops he has conducted. Luka is both a powerful writer and performer who will have you in turns cheering and sighing with delight as his oratory.

Luka performing- May Your Pen Grace the Page (at the Nuyorican, New York)

If you're not seeing a playable video above then click here for a direct YouTube link


We're delighted to have back Omar bin Musa, recently seen telling it like it is on ABC's Q and A, as the night's MC


Okay, so now you know, why you must go to see this show. Sweetalkers is

Sunday October 9th
Bendigo Hotel
125 Johnston Street
Melbourne, Australia

$10 suggested donation entry

8pm (for an 8pm start).
Doors open 7.30

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