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Say Sum Thin Success

3 Mar


After months of planning and preparation, Mouthy took to the stage at the end of February to perform “Say Sum Thin 8”. It was a resounding success, with over 100 audience members for both nights! It’s hard to articulate how much energy was put into every bit of work needed to produce the shows and to name all that participated, in making them as good as they were, is to put every single Mouthy Poet name down.

We would like to thank you, however; as the audience you clicked, clapped and mhmm’d throughout both nights and for a poet to experience that is only going to make them grow in confidence and feel that the work they put in was worth it.

We were privileged on Friday night to play host to First Time Dave, on his ‘Good to Talk’ Cycle Tour. Dave is doing 10 gigs, in 10 cities in 10 days and by the time he had reached Nottingham he had already cycled hundreds of miles and he had many more to go. His charity of choice for Nottingham was Harmless, an amazing service that offers support, training and consultancy to those who self harm; Say Sum Thin 8 and First Time Dave managed to raise £115 for this amazing cause! So thank you to those who donated and please continue to support them in their work. (Harmless Website / Review)

Friday night also saw members of the audience give us a taste of their own poetry in open mic slots, it is a brave thing to do and it was a delight to hear the voices of those who came to hear ours.

On to Saturday, and before the headline show Ideas Tap offered a free workshop with New York Slam Poet Jon Sands. We were made to look at persona poems, challenged in a free write and enjoyed a (totally relevant) game of “I don’t believe you!”. We certainly all took something from the workshop and it was a good moment for the Mouthy’s to relax before the headline show that evening.


The Mouthy Poets Cafe opened at half 7 to a very busy atrium and the show began. Once again there were clicks, claps and appreciation shown throughout – with a choreographed piece which involved doughnuts, armadillos, a jam roly poly and much more. The show finished with Jon Sands performing some of his poems to a ruckus of laughter and acknowledgement of his incredible word play and imagery. If you can, check out his book “The New Clean” and find out more on his website! A big thank you goes to him for being so energetic and bringing that to the stage for us to share.

The show does not end at lights up however, the evaluation process continues as we start to collate the feedback you gave us! This will make Mouthy grow and improve, so that we can continue to provide you with bigger and better performances. You can continue to give feedback of your experience using the hashtag #SST8. We will be picking a random winner from these who will receive a Zine signed by Mouthy & Jon Sands!B-8-kOLWsAEaBEf

We are also still on tour and will be hitting the MAC in Birmingham this Saturday, with guest poet Hannah Silva! Make sure to check out our Facebook event page and community page and our Twitter for updates on what we’re up to.

So thank you, once again, for joining us for Say Sum Thin 8! Weare so grateful that you came to support us and we loved speaking out to you. If you can’t get enough of us…Say Sum Thin 9 is on the 25th of July! Pencil it in!

“I am full up but there is always room for desert”

“You guys are amazing…”

“Excellent, had a brilliant time”

“We ❤ poetry! Thank you XXX”


“Powerful, imaginative and breath-taking. Thank you! X”

“10 out of 10 would poem again”

“Brilliant! First timer and loved every second. Diversity of poems was great. Well done Mouthy!”


Why Say Sum Thin (8)?

23 Feb


With Say Sum Thin 8 fast approaching we thought we’d give you a chance to find out why we’re performing in Djanogly, what you can expect from us and what we do as a collective!

The end of this week (27th and 28th of Feb) sees Mouthy take to the stage at Djanogly City Academy Theatre for their Spring show “Say Sum Thin 8”. Over two nights there will be performances from NYC poet Jon Sands, school kids who took part in a workshop, Mouthy Poets themselves and even possibly you. 

As a Community Interest Company we aim to educate and develop the vocabulary and skills of young people, through spoken word.  We give them the chance to ‘say sum thin’ about their story…which the freedom of spoken word allows to endless levels, and last year we worked with every single student in Djanogly and ran two showcases with them. This was a huge success and we want to show the students of Djanogly the possibilities spoken word has in performance and also we want to continue the strong relationship forged with them. This isn’t just what we think though, the response we had from the events was nothing but positive and we are grateful to those that attended, and more so to the students who took part and showed their community, and the city, how strong their voices are.

“I was moved in all manner of ways by the event, which means you and your students captured the essence of what life is really about and the complexity of emotions we all share.” C. Grindrod

We were also really glad to hear the responses of the students themselves and it was fulfilling to know that we had helped them gain confidence in a society that can be unforgiving to young people. However, this is only the start as we wish to develop the seeds we’ve planted and continue to give a platform, a voice, to the children at Djanogly and the other schools around the city.

“I wanted to tell you all that sometimes I’m not very nice just because I feel bad about some things that have happened. But here I feel like I’m accepted.” Participator 

After the shows we often ask people to fill out evaluation forms; this is so we can provide a better experience to the 15-30 year olds within the collective, so we can improve our performances for you the audience and also to make sure the positives are voiced and the effort put into creating each show is worth it. The audience comments from our Djanogly Festival go to show the importance of our work not just to the collective itself but also to those who watch.

“To have such courage and talent at a young age – you are all inspirational” Audience Member

“There is something beautifully important happening here” Audience Member

We are also aware that performances are often centralised in the main theatres of our cities, we want to combat this and give something back to the local communities which have given us the voices of our collective. Spoken word especially, is for the people; this is thanks to its energy, topical subject matter, method of performance and the platform it provides for people to speak up. Created as an attempt to revitalise poetry it combats the environment which has arguably facilitated poetry’s decline.

These are just two of the reasons we are staging our Say Sum Thin 8 Performance at Djanogly and we hope that you can join us over the two nights to celebrate young local talent, the local community and to enjoy the stories being told.

Ticket Info:

The two nights can be booked online at the Nottingham Playhouse website (Friday / Saturday) but there is a discount for the two nights and group bookings which require you to call their Box Office (0115 941 9419). Concessions are also available!

The Friday night is our scratch show and will include an Open Mic opportunity for people in the audience (thought spaces will be limited). Saturday is our headline performance, where we welcome Jon Sands from New York City to come and say sum thin alongside our Mouthys.

Find out more on our Facebook Event Page and our Website! We’re also on Twitter @MouthyPoets where you can find constant updates of what we’re getting up to!

Other comments:

“Seeing young people find and speak their truths and values should happen more – elevate the voice of young people” Audience Member

“Djanogly student poets – YOU ROCK. I am moved to tears!” Audience Member

“Did you see that though – I was on fire” Djanogly Participant

“We’re a poetry family” Djanogly Participant

On attending “To support Djanogly that gets some negative press and to support the positive” Audience Member

“The standard of the work was high, as was the passion all concerned had put into the project.” C. Grindrod

post evidence

The Friday Workshop: Take 5

7 Feb

This week we had Panya the Poet taking the workshop. The focus this week, with only 3 to go until Say Sum Thin 8, was getting feedback and really developing the work we had already.

As a quick starter task we were asked to create a poem from a sheet with a random selection of sentences and of course what you get to see is the variation of the minds of Mouthy. Some very surreal texts were created and others very serious but it worked towards picking out strong lines that spoke to us – something that can be useful when editing and creating a poem to see which lines strengthen it, a point picked up on last week by Roger Robinson.

Split into groups we worked for some time so that each person could get detailed feedback on their poem, something especially important as we get ever closer to the big day!

Today (Saturday 7th) some of Mouthy are in Cambridge to perform on tour at the Mumford Theatre. You have to admire the ability of these guys to go to uni/ to work/ write for SST8/ perform on Tour and then do everything else you want and need to do in life. There is only one more tour stop before SST8 and all production teams are working hard to create an incredible event for YOU.

SO. Head over to the event page for Say Sumthin 8, get a taste for what you can expect.

Buy Tickets too: Scratch and Headline.

Check out our Facebook for what we do.

Check out our Twitter for updates of the day to day Mouthy life.

Check out our YouTube to see how awesome spoken word can be.

Check out our website; for upcoming events, the new Poet Focuses, news and everything you could dream of!

Task To Go

Head to a public place and discreetly position yourself somewhere you can eavesdrop on a conversation.

Listen to what they’re saying and try and pick up on a line that interests you then develop it. Take that line and create a poem or piece of prose.

Inspiration for poems are all around us, you just need to listen up and hear it!

The Friday Workshop 2015: Take 2

17 Jan

Another week has passed, another week gained on the upcoming Say Sum Thin 8.

This week Debris was interested in form and in particular prose poetry. A rebellious movement starting in France it looked to move away from the standard fixed forms of poetry…ironically it now finds itself as an established form in its own right – awkward.

To begin the session we were handed a list of statements; we were asked whether we agreed or disagreed with them and why, a few stood out and one in particular to me.

“No matter how much you know, you can always know more”, this was under the heading of “what makes good art?” and the unanimous opinion was one of agreement – as you will probably find yourself thinking. However, ‘you can’ doesn’t mean that you’ll act on the knowledge you gain or even look to gain more in the first place. This is surely dangerous, to stay within a comfort zone of ‘knowing’ and produce from what you only already know, but arguably ‘good art’, a subjective term if ever there was one, has been created from the same idea over and over…dare I say the name Hirst? And fashion, the constantly evolving aesthetic which replays the past. As with many of the statements there was rarely a surefire yes or no; exceptions have to be made, changes need to be made.

Changing and evolving poetry is an essential part of the writing process and this is what Debris built up; drafts are adapted to a new style, not to say that they must end up in prose but to provide a different angle, a new perspective. We also did this with the verbs in our poems, using a thesaurus we were asked to change every verb in our drafts so that we looked more specifically at our word choice and unsurprisingly some of the results were odd but others added just that little bit more to them. Consequently a lot of us found that we were discovering new words – despite what we knew we could know more and this helped make our work better.

Aside from the poetry more ‘behind the scenes’ work was done for SST8. The Twitter hashtag #SST8 is now in use and so make sure you’re getting involved; let us know you’re coming, how the drafts are coming on and how obviously very excited you are! Some flyer examples were also on show and just you guys wait, they’re almost worth framing and will be spread across the city soon. Mouthy will be shouting from the rooftops or more likely the streets (damn health and safety) so listen up and join us at Djanogly City Academy Theatre on the 27th and 28th of February.

Details can be found here: https://www.facebook.com/events/678342562285055/?fref=ts

Designer=Honey, Client=Mouthy, I give you the ‘6 Step Design Process’

28 Feb

Say Sum Thin 6 beckons….

#Mouthy Poets head honcho creator #DeborahStevenson gives me the call to design the promotional artwork for the show, this time its a flyer.
Who am I? I hear you ask…. Well I’m Honey Williams, one of the Mouthy Poets also a Freelance Graphic Designer/ Illustrator amongst other things (my pseudonym is The Pickyheads) and I’m normally called upon to create artwork for Mouthy events.
‘The Design Process’ may be a thing of mystery to some, so Im here to de-mystify any illusions or myths about this simple process….(well the simplicity of the process depends on if the client knows what they want or not).
If the client says that they want their design to look ‘nice’ its then that you need to worry.
 Every designer is different but whatever a service a designer offers you will go a little something like this…

DESIGN PROCESS: 6 Step Design Process

Designer: Honey, Client: 'Mouthy', I give you the '6 Step Design Process'


STEP 1: Contact Designer


Contact Designer –brief outline of what you want, arrange a time/place for a consultation

STEP 2: Consultation (Meeting)


  • Define what you or your organisation does
  • Define What your niche market is
  • Clearly communicate what you want in more detail
  • All info is gathered in order to help create a design brief (usually created by client)


  • The Designer may be able give you a quote and job time span then and there or may need to go way and think about it and come back to you with a definitive answer.

STEP 3: Design Brief


Write a design brief and email it to the designer along with anything else you feel may be helpful.


The designer will let you know if this is clear to them or not.

STEP 4:  Payment


  • The Designer will send you quote and job time span.
  • The Designer will send an invoice


  • 50% of the agreed fee will be paid to the Designer and the designer will not start designing until that day.

STEP 5: Design Ideas/ Options


  • The Designer will send you an initial design idea option for you to see within a period (depending on the scale of the design job.)


  • Client needs to let the Designer know whether they are happy with the direction the design is going in or not.

[This step may involve some back and forth communication]



  • The Designer will send you a Hi Resolution file of your design by the agreed deadline.


  • The remaining 50% to be paid upon completion.

If you are in doubt about anything, need to make change please contact the designer as soon as you can and likewise if the Designer is unclear about something they should contact you a.s.a.p.

Designers may charge you for alterations/ changes.

phew! thats it.

See the finished flyer here…. https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=10152173111120943&set=gm.1441164549450550&type=1&theater and whilst you’re at it feel free to buy a ticket!