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StAnza plans to ‘Make it New’ as it launches innovative digital festival for 2021

Published: 02 Oct 2020

Fife festival unveils ambitious new format on National Poetry Day

StAnza, Scotland’s International Poetry Festival is using National Poetry Day to launch its innovative digital festival for 2021. The annual event which takes place in the Fife town of St Andrews in March has unveiled ambitious plans to take the festival online next year, in light of the Covid-19 pandemic.

StAnza Festival Director, Eleanor Livingstone said: “The cultural sector has been hit extremely hard by Covid-19 so I’m delighted to be sharing some good news on National Poetry Day with the launch of our digital festival.

“Throughout the pandemic, people have turned to poetry as a way of dealing with these unusual circumstances, illustrating the positive impact this artform has on wellbeing and emotional lives.

“StAnza 2021 will celebrate this profound relevance through festival events and other projects, showcasing a wide range of poetry, from page to performance, concrete verse to spoken word, established artists to emerging voices – committed as ever to the fact that when it comes to poetry there really is something for everyone.”

StAnza, one of Europe’s leading literary festivals, will bring a dynamic mix of audio and digital, live, virtual and pre-recorded events to a Scottish and international audience from its festival hub in St Andrews between 10th and 14th March 2021. While the new format will still include traditional StAnza favourites such as readings and round table events, organisers have created new events capturing the full potential of the digital realm. These include interactive poetry installations, ‘At Home’ events with poets and an enhanced filmpoem and sound poem programme. Festival organisers are also working on a series of installations which can be enjoyed by those with little or no access to the internet.

Viccy Adams, Literature Officer, Creative Scotland added: “Creative Scotland is delighted to be able to support StAnza in addressing the challenges of isolation and uncertainty we all face through the joys and benefits of poetry. This 2021 hybrid-digital edition of the festival is set to capture the usual StAnza spirit of lifting up the voices of Scottish poets alongside their international peers, and reaching out to audiences inventively.”

StAnza traditionally focuses on two themes which interweave with each other to give each annual festival its own unique flavour. Next year’s themes are fittingly ‘Make It New’ and ‘No Rhyme nor Reason’, with a translated language focus of ‘Beyond the Iron Curtain’.

StAnza 2021 will bring over 80 poets, artists, events, projects and installations to a digital audience for five days in March.

Find out more on the StAnza website