The Poetry Night at Sappho in June will play host to AVANT GAGA #60, a gala reading in association with the University of Sydney’s Poetry Now symposium. AVANT GAGA #60 will take place on the first Tuesday of the month (not the usual second) and will feature Keston Sutherland (UK), Michael Farrell, Kate Fagan, Jazz Money, Andrew Brooks, Jonathan Dunk, and Toby Fitch. There will be no open mic section at this event due to the large lineup of guest poets (apologies, but it’ll be back in July!). Entry is FREE, as ever, with drinks and tapas available for purchase at the bar.
KESTON SUTHERLAND is a British poet, and Professor of Poetics at the University of Sussex. His books of poetry include ‘Scherzos Benjyosos’ (The Last Books 2020), ‘Whither Russia’ (Barque Press 2017), ‘Poetical Works’ (Enitharman Press 2015), and ‘The Odes to TL61P’ (Enitharman Press 2013), the latter of which, among other things, is a book of odes to the bygone Hotpoint washer-dryer, “TL61P”.
MICHAEL FARRELL grew up in Bombala, NSW, and lives in exile in Victoria. Michael’s poems (eg in latest books ‘Googlecholia’ and ‘Family Trees’, published by Giramondo) express the tornness and derangement of that situation.
KATE FAGAN is a widely published writer and musician whose third volume, ‘First Light’ (Giramondo), was shortlisted for the NSW Premier’s Literary Awards and the Age Book of the Year Award. She is Director of the Writing and Society Research Centre at WSU, where she founded The Writing Zone, a mentoring program for emerging writers and arts workers from Greater Western Sydney. Her new collection ‘Song in the Grass’ is forthcoming with Giramondo.
JAZZ MONEY (she/they) is a poet and artist of Wiradjuri heritage producing works that encompass installation, digital, performance, film and print. Their first poetry collection, ‘how to make a basket’ (UQP 2021), was the 2020 winner of the David Unaipon Award.
ANDREW BROOKS is a poet and a lecturer in media cultures at UNSW. His books include the poetry collection ‘Inferno’ (Rosa Press 2021) and the prose collection ‘Homework’ (Discipline 2021), written with Snack Syndicate co-conspirator and poet Astrid Lorange.
JONATHAN DUNK is a poet, fiction writer and essayist, and a lecturer in writing and literature at Deakin University. He is the recipient of the AD Hope prize and the Dal Stivens award. With Evelyn Araluen he edits Overland Literary Journal.
TOBY FITCH is the host and organiser of AVANT GAGA and the Poetry Night at Sappho. He is poetry editor of Overland and a lecturer in creative writing at University of Sydney. His recent books of poetry include ‘Object Permanence: Calligrammes’ (Puncher & Wattmann / Thorny Devil 2022) and ‘Sydney Spleen’ (Giramondo 2021).
IMAGE: Michael Farrell, ‘The only failure is to not try’ (detail), collage and paint on art paper, 2023.