Such a warm, creative and rich event. The session dedicated to mutual translations was a real happening with a lot of exchanges, work, laughter. Michel Cassir
I have been delighted by every minute I spent at StAnza. I loved every reading, and it's so nice to have this audience, it's so rare and precious. Aurelia Lassaque
A splendid achievement, above all absolute quality in all fields. The audiences' generous applause has warmed my heart. Bravo. Jacques Darras
I love StAnza’s out-of-the-way centrality. Aonghas MacNeacail
Before we start to look towards StAnza 2018 and the poetry treats it promises, it’s time to pause and think back to the festival that came before. Bold, beautiful, brilliant, it brought us poetry to light up the days, poetry as a lifeline as the dark draws in, poetry to give us morning after hair.
Appropriately enough, given that one of our 2017 themes was On the Road, our 20th annual festival was also one of our most international. Poets from countries as far apart as Iceland and Italy, Catalonia and Quebec, joined poets, artists, musicians, writers and film-makers (listed below) from across the UK. From poetry breakfasts to late night jazz sessions, the best of emerging talent performed some of the UK’s leading voices in a programme of readings and performances, discussions and workshops, music and film.
The best festivals don’t just showcase poetry but also spark new work, and it was a joy to hear the poems created by our translation workshop (in partnership with the SPL) which brought together French and Scottish poets. Our wider French focus, La Nouvelle Alliance, celebrated and renewed the historical connections between Scotland and France and led to our first ever foreign-language poet in residence, Aurelia Lassaque, whose haunting snatches of songs and poems echoed through the festival.
As ever, poetry filled the town, spilling out of the stages and spaces of the Byre and our other venues and into the everyday. Poems murmured through the gardens of the Preservation Trust. Katherine McMahon and Harry Giles travelled as Poets on the Road between St Andrews, Leuchars and Dundee, sharing poetry with commuters and travelers. The new creations by Christodoulos Makris, our digital poet in residence, found their ways onto windows and mirrors and, sometimes, toilet doors. There was poetry which was playful, poetry which was personal, poetry which was political. Poetry which reeled us in and left us wanting more.
Until next year then…
Photos of poets and others taking part in StAnza 2017 and some of our favourite venue or atmosphere shots of St Andrews
The Scores: podcast interview at StAnza with Vahni Capildeo
The Scores: podcast interview at StAnza with Katharine Towers
The Scores: podcast interview at StAnza with Paul Stephenson
The Scores: podcast interview at StAnza with Robert Crawford
2017 Reviews and Interviews
StAnza 2017 took place from 1-5 March, 2017
Our themes for StAnza 2017 were On The Road and the Heights of Poetry.