THE ACCELERATOR Ever Dundas heads along to a lively new night of poetry

T he Accelerator is a new Edinburgh and Glasgow performance poetry night run by Jem Rolls and Bram E Gieben. ‘We want to be the highest-energy night around,’ says Rolls, describing the pair’s vision for the event. ‘We want it to be poetic, theatrical, comedic, physical, beautiful, visceral, smart, dumb. We want to present the highest quality at its most diverse.’

The List attended their first Edinburgh show, and felt that it didn’t quite meet the organisers’ aims. The choice of performers and poems could be more discerning, but there was a buzz to the evening and Rolls and Gieben were friendly and engaging MCs. The cosy Canons’ Gait was packed with an eager audience and the set began with Rolls’ energetic ode to performance poetry, before moving onto Colin McGuire’s social commentaries. ‘The Social Science of Sorry’ (a funny take on British manners)

and ‘Gymnauseum’ (a look at our body obsession), were great pieces of satire, with ‘Lady Nervosa’ asking ‘does my soul look big in this?’ A handful of poems were forgettable and too many picked easy targets, raising laughs but not amounting to much. The exuberant and angry pieces could do with a measured delivery and would be more powerful for it. The star of the evening was JL Williams, with a pitch-perfect delivery that had the audience hanging on every dreamy word. Her poems were beautiful and mythic, conjuring evocative imagery that filled the room with magic. It’s early days yet, and The Accelerator could well prove to be something special.

The Canons’ Gait, Edinburgh, Wed 12 Feb; The Roxy 171, Glasgow, Thu 13 Feb.


P O H S B D R A W D © O T O H P E


Louise Welsh Winter Words Festival Literary The ever-popular Glasgow author delivers stimulation from accessible authors ranging a lecture entitled ‘Robert Louis Stevenson and from ex-Everything But the Girl singer Tracey the Theatre of the Brain’. If that wasn’t intriguing Thorn (pictured) to broadcaster and memoirist enough, let us hit you with the event’s subtitle: Sally Magnusson. Pitlochry Festival Theatre, ‘An Exploration of. Port Na Craig, Fri 14–Sat 22 Feb.

Louise Gavin Welsh Francis The The ever-popular winner of the 2013 Glasgow author de- Scottish Mortgage livers a lecture en- titled ‘Robert Louis Investment Trust Stevenson and Book Awards takes the Theatre of the us on a journey to Brain’. If that wasn’t Antarctica. Expect intriguing enough, let us hit chills, thrills and penguins. National Library of you with the event’s subti- Scotland, Edinburgh, Thu 20 Feb. tle: ‘An Exploration of.

The Queen Who Flew Through the Sky to Seek Her Beloved Banish the

dreich weather and cosy up with a beautiful Indian fairytale from storyteller Sharadha Bain. Scottish Storytelling Centre, Edinburgh, Sat 15 Feb.

The Accelerator A brand-spanking-new spoken word event in both Glasgow and

Edinburgh. Look out for our favourites Tim Turnbull and Skye Loneragan (see review, left). The Canons’ Gait, Edinburgh, Wed 12 Feb; The Roxy 171, Glasgow, Thu 13 Feb.

Joanne Harris It’s a fantasy first for bestselling author Harris, best known for the likes of Chocolat and Five Quarters of the Orange. The Gospel of Loki observes the rise and fall of Norse gods through the eyes of trickster deity, Loki. Blackwell’s, Edinburgh, Tue 18 Feb.

The Neu! Reekie! Alternative Burns Bash A luscious blend of music, film and

spoken word. Entry fee includes everything you need to celebrate Burns-style: haggis, neeps and tatties and whisky, of course. Pilrig St Paul’s Church, Edinburgh, Sat 25 Jan.

41 THE LIST 23 Jan–20 Feb 2014 23 Jan–20 Feb 2014 THE LIST 41