Featured Event

When

Sunday, October 23 @ 7:00pm

Where

Howler
7-11 Dawson St Brunswick

Price

$15/12 ($20/15 on the door)

Has an Open Mic?

No

Melbourne Spoken Word brings you Canadian performance poet Tanya Evanson.

“Tanya Evanson’s poetry is a voluptuous, rhythmic song. Her voice comes from deep in her belly and erupt

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Words
Reviews — September 26

Tiny Drum and Eltham Courthouse Appearance - Brendan Bonsack delivers the full tour

By Benjamin Solah

I know Brendan Bonsack first as a photographer. He is a familiar sight at spoken word events in his black on black uniform, camera poised, a reticent presence but his slight smile always at the ready. His black and white specials are beloved profile photos by performing poets. I knew from seeing him perform “A Rough Guide,” at the 2015 Melbourne Spoken Word prize that he could also be a wry and entertaining story teller. I knew from the multiple books and albums featured on his website that he was prodigious and multi-talented. But he doesn’t perform so often on the open mic “circuit,” so I was excited when I discovered that he would be featuring at the Eltham Courthouse in August.

The high ceilings and historical feel of the courthouse turned out to be a lovely backdrop for the performance. Mr Bonsack stepped up to the witness stand with his guitar and quietly introduced his performance by suggesting we needn’t clap between pieces. This was followed by roughly half an hour of sung and spoken poetry. It was like being given a brief tour of a weathered, much-loved and deeply storied house. Each room or setting was beautiful on its own, but it was the house as a whole that revealed the heart and artistry of the set.

I also got the accompanying chapbook that was offered on the night, “Tiny Drum” which turned out to be like liner notes to a favoured album. This article is a joint to Brendan’s performance at the Eltham Courthouse and his chapbook “Tiny Drum” that started off as a memory aid but is slowly beginning to supplant my memory of the night.

Moving effortlessly between song and poetry, Brendan ushered us into the house. With his first short piece,

“I once knew a doctor a doctor of the mind

it was my first time” — from “A Doctor”

we were humorously welcomed into the parlour, given a hint of so much more, then deftly moved on.

Some doors opened onto intense memories: