Circuit Live

5 London Boroughs, 5 libraries, 5 spoken word artists, 50 young people, 50 Arts Awards.
Each library will host a series of spoken word workshops, which will be led by a credible spoken word artist and will engage with the themes and values of the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic games. The work of the young people will be celebrated with a final performance at the British Library. You can follow the work of the young people and the journey of the project right here!


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SGB was Kentish Town Guest poet. He read some of the young peoples work as well as one of his own compositions.

work in progress from some of the young people at the Kentish Town Library during the Circuit Live Poetry project


DV8 Training’s Circuit Live team has spent the past few weeks working on their wordplay and soaking up the advice from mentors Dean Atta and Natalie Maddix. As they prepare to put down the pen and hit the studio, our Waltham Forest Library partners dropped in for a quick catch up.

“I am really impressed by the work that the young people have produced and the angles they have taken with the Olympic themes,” enthuses Damien Nembhard, the Arts Award practitioner from Waltham Forest Library. “Circuit Live has been a great project for the learners and I’m happy to see it manifest into some amazing spoken word and music.”

A recording artist in his own right (see link below), Damien will be attending the event at the British Library along with Maddy Fogelman and other members of the Waltham Forest team. Circuit Live has introduced us to Fusion from DV8 Training and a fantastic group of creative young people who live in the area,” says Maddy, Waltham Forest Libraries Development Officer (Young People). “It was great having Dean Atta as our Circuit Live poetry mentor; he has inspired the group and even performed at one of our recent open mic night. We’re hoping to collaborate again with DV8 in the near future and get young people involved in our projects and vice versa. Our forthcoming Black History Month project, Caribbean Through A Lens, could be a great starting place for this process.”

As the days count down to the big performance, it already looks like the Walthamstow team is on a winning streak. Make sure you are at The British Library on Thursday, Sept 13th to see the whole story unfold. 

Words: iitsFusion

BRIXTON CIRCUIT LIVE in a creative writing session at Seven in Brixton with artists-in-residence TY & Malika Booker.

"the eyes trying to function open too stunned to work out there through the window & into the dark with it’s various glints & glows: mosquito, very distant cockcrow, sound system drum, the tumbrel of a passing engine somewhere some/ where in that dark. It must have been an ear/ ring’s earier sound that sprawled me to the window…" bk: Trench Town Rock by Kamau Brathwaite.

Nicholas Makoha is a dynamic writer born in Uganda and has lived in Kenya, Saudi Arabia and currently resides in London. He is one of ten contemporary poets in the UK to have been selected for Spread the Word’s Complete Works development programme. During the programme he has been mentored  by eminent poet George Szirtes, both writers in exile.

As a resident artist of Spoke-Lab he developed a 1-man- show “My Father & Other Superheroes”. One man’s honest revelation of how pop culture raised him in the absence of his father. It was showcased at Stratford Theatre East and toured to Olso with the British Council. He was the Writer in Residence for Newham Libraries in a venture conceived by Spread the Word and Newham Libraries and Arts Service together with Arts Council England.

In 2008 he completed a project with the Tate Modern in which his poem “Vista” was used as part of a video installation to promote the Turner prize in 2008 for Tate Remix.

Nick is the director of the Youth Poetry Network through which he provides a charismatic and responsive approach to workshop facilitation in Business and schools. Clients include the London-Chicago Teenage Poetry Slams, the National Endowment for Science, Stephen Lawrence Centre, Technology and the Arts (NESTA) and Creative Partnerships. As a former NESTA mentor he is an ongoing advocate of young people wishing to work in the Arts and Media.


CYL’s Poetry Workshops will be held at: Deptford Lounge, Giffin St SE8 4RJ

 Tuesday 27th August - Friday 31st August at 12-3pm


Listen to Jill Scott’s family reunion/ take note of the lyrics - Notice how the singer/ song writer makes sharp observations about her family. The beauty of this piece is that each character is mostly represented by a sentance, but as audience members we are given hints of back stories and some of the depths to this character.

Now make an observation of friends and family members and write your own family piece.

Artists in Residence at Brixton Library Ty & Malika Booker delivery the first Circuit Live workshop for Lambeth Young Brixton artists join Ty & Malika Booker on the Circuit Live Project




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