Join us in the stunning surrounds of 254-year-old The Leeds Library for one of Leeds’ leading poetry nights! The 16th installment of ‘Chelping’ stars Casey Bailey and Ella Otomewo, plus open mic hosted by Matt Abbott.
Previous headliners have included internationally renowned performers such as recent T.S. Eliot Prize winner Joelle Taylor, Sabrina Mahfouz, Anthony Anaxagorou, and Theresa Lola. We’ve also had nationally renowned poets including Cecilia Knapp, Jess Green, and Toby Campion.
Casey Bailey is a writer, performer, and educator born and raised in Birmingham. He’s the Birmingham Poet Laureate 2020 – 2022 and the Greater Birmingham Future Face of Arts and Culture 2020. Casey’s second full poetry collection Please Do Not Touch was published by Burning Eye in 2021.
He was commissioned by the BBC to write The Ballad Of The Peaky Blinders in 2019. In 2020 the poem was internationally recognised, winning a Webby Award. Casey has performed his poetry nationally, and internationally.
Casey was named as one of Birmingham Live’s ‘Birmingham “30 under 30” of 2018, he’s is a Fellow of the University of Worcester and in 2021 was awarded an honorary doctorate by Newman University.
Ella Otomewo is a poet, performer, and facilitator who found her voice in the spoken word community. She has led performance poetry workshops for universities, community groups, libraries, schools, and festivals; and has performed all over the UK and in Europe. Her most recent collaborations have been with Quarantine, Robert F. Kennedy Human Rights, and Manchester City of Literature.
In her next project (with Z-arts and Young Identity), Ella is devising an interactive performance piece for children, which will explore our relationship with water. The process will be multidisciplinary and collaborative; using puppetry, poetry, task-based performance, and sensory theatre. She was also commissioned as part of Nymphs & Thugs’ Disarm Hate x Poetry project in 2021.
All six slots have now been filled. Apologies for any disappointment caused!
Matt Abbott is a poet, educator, and activist from Wakefield. His début one-man show ‘Two Little Ducks’ earned a string of 5* reviews at Edinburgh Fringe 2017 and on a 2018 UK theatre tour. The show’s poems were published as his début poetry collection by Verve Poetry Press in 2018.
Matt’s début kids’ poetry collection ‘A Hurricane in my Head’ was published by Bloomsbury in 2019 and was a National Poetry Day selected title. He formed Nymphs & Thugs, the UK’s leading spoken word record label, in 2015. He also fronts indie outfit Skint & Demoralised. Notable commissions include TV ads for Nationwide Building Society and Leeds United FC’s centenary kit launch.