CILIP Fellowships/Harjo Lecture/Masefield RSC Adaptation – Poetry News Roundup October 25th

Today on My Poetic Side we look at the 2023 CILIP Honorary Fellowships, Jo Harjo’s lecture and the Masefield adaptation to be performed by the RSC.

CILIP Honorary Fellowships

Honorary CILIP fellowships have been awarded to Joseph Coelho, Professor Briony Birdi and Alison Wheeler.

The fellowship, which is awarded by CILIP (previously known as the Library Association), has been around since 1896. This is an award that offers the highest recognition to individuals who have made a contribution to the world of information, knowledge and library that is outstanding.

This year’s fellowships have been awarded to individuals who are from very different backgrounds and who have all made incredibly valuable contributions in their sector.

Coelho is a playwright, author and award-winning poet. He is the current Waterstones Children’s laureate. He has also recently undertaken an incredibly journey around the libraries of the UK, during which time he gave many interview and raised awareness for the importance of public and school libraries. His fellowship has been awarded for his significant contributions to reading and libraries.

Wheelers fellowship recognises her contributions to the information and library profession. She was a 2018 recipient of an MBE for her services to libraries. Birdi is a researcher and academic in library and information science.

Joy Harjo, US Poet Laureate to Give Lecture

On 9th November, Joy Harjo will be giving the annual First Peoples of the Plains Lecture (Claire M Hubbard). The lecture will be taking place at the Lied Centre for Performing Arts, which is at the Johnny Carson Theatre.

During the lecture she will be reading some of her poetry and also taking part in a session of questions and answers with the audience.

Harjo was born in Tulsa, Oklahoma. She is a renowned writer and performer of the Muscogee (Creek) Nation. She was appointed as the 23rd poet laureate of the US in 2019 when she became not only the first Native American to hold the position but also the second person to serve it the position for three terms. She has written nine poetry books, a number of plays, some books for children and two memoirs. She has also received numerous award during her career including the Academy of American Poets‘ Wallace Stevens Award, the Ivan Sandrof Lifetime Achievement Award and the Poetry Society of America‘s William Carlos Williams Award. She is also the artist in residence at the Bob Dylan Centre.

Work by Poet Who Wrote Stratford Theatre’s First Words to be Put on by RSC

For many people, the assumption is that the first words spoken on the stage of the new Shakespeare playhouse when it opened in 1932 would have been written by the bard himself. However, this is not the case. They were actually written by John Masefield.

56 years after the death of Masefield, who also served as the poet laureate, his words will once again be heard on the stage when an adaptation of The Box of Delights, his 1935 children’s adventure, will be put on by the RSC.

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