Greenland photo by Paul Lomatschinsky
SUSAN RICHARDSON and SIOBHAN LOGAN use poetry, storytelling and multi-media performance to evoke the unique appeal of one of the planet's last great wildernesses. Having experienced this landscape first-hand, they explore the heritage of the Arctic from indigenous peoples and Viking women to European explorers. They also highlight the fragility of this landscape at a time of climate change. The Polar Poets can offer performances, talks and workshops for adults or children on these themes.


Polar Poets EVENTS 2011

Arctic-ulate in Manchester

John Rylands Library Deansgate
Sat. Dec. 3rd 2011
2 - 4 Creative Writing workshop FREE
6 - 7.30pm 'Arctic-ulate' show FREE
pre-booking essential for both events
on 0161 306 0555 or

Saturday, 3 July 2010

Arctic-ulating in Wrexham

So many stories, so little time. And in the steamy heat of a midsummer evening in Wrexham, we were conjuring an icy landscape – quite unable to don our usual costume of woolly hats and jacket! Susan and I were performing our brand new show, Arctic-ulate to an audience of science fans at Wrexham Science Festival. As time ran short, we were ditching poems and photos like desperate ice-trekkers trying to make the last mile. And as we moved through the plight of Inuits, polar bears and penguins facing pollution or possible extinction, the university's PC quietly shut itself down, the projector light faded and our 'Last Legend' was delivered appropriately enough in semi-gloom.

We were blessed with the intimate setting of a lecture theatre and an intelligent, responsive audience who were keen to ask questions and stay around to chat. They warmed to Susan's portrayal of the feisty Viking woman Gudrid, 'the world's most traveled woman' in her time. And they proved to be enthusiastic frost giants and football warriors when called on to participate in my Firebridge and Auroral Football poems. Later the questions and discussions focused particularly on how indigenous arctic peoples cope with the impact of westernisation and the pollution of their environment. Here's some of their feedback on our debut show:

'You two are so intelligent – you make me proud to be a woman!'

'There's so much work gone into this show – it was brilliant!'

'As a bit of a polar buff, this was right up my street. Really interesting.'

'I've always wanted to see the Northern Lights so the images were wonderful.'

This morning Susan and I got a chance to see around the rest of the Wrexham Science Festival on their Scientriffic day for families. There were wonderful interactive displays and activities for kids all over the campus. We saw children petting owls – amazingly calm creatures. There were the bugs courtesy of the Mountain Zoo. (We're also grateful to them for that side-splitting story of what happened when one of their attendants, dressed in a husky dog outfit, was mobbed by 400 brownies !) And at another stand we were blown away by pictures of 'star-dust clouds' in outer space and a narrative that took in the greatest mystery of all – what is the 'spark' that first gives rise to life on a planet? Great inspiration for a poet.

We were sorry to be missing upcoming events at the festival, such as 'Appleton: Discoverer of the Ionosphere', (Mon.5th July), 'Standing up for Nature' ( Tues 6th), 'Weathering Solar Storms' (Thurs. 8th) and 'Living Inside the Wolf Pack'. These were just some of the events which linked to our own interests but there are dozens of events to choose from all week. So all in all, great fun to do, lovely audience and a very positive debut for Artic-ulate. We're grateful to Katie, Andy and the team who looked after us, including Liam, our 'gofer' who took these nifty pictures for us. Have a great week, guys!

1 comment:

  1. It all sound truly amazing... and I thought I was 'far north' [my furthest] in Wester Ross, north of Ullapool last week!