Monday, September 29, 2014

Canterbury Poets Collective readings Spring 2014

It's an epic week of poetry this week - Poetry Slam Tuesday night, Canterbury Poets Collective on Wednesday and Lady Poets on Thursday.  Next week we're back at the Twisted Hop in Woolston for another Catalyst open mic.  Check out the poster for the CPC Spring readings this year in a new venue.  Featuring many excellent poets (including our very own Doc Drumheller and Ciaran Fox) and of course the CPC open mic series.  Get along!

Monday, September 22, 2014

Christchurch Poetry Slam - Da Rulz

Kia ora.  We have had to postpone the big night for one week but in the meantime here is a handy run-down of the official NZ Poetry Slam rules which we'll be using at the Christchurch heat.

See you next week!

Christchurch Poetry Slam
Tuesday 30th Sept, 7pm
Darkroom 336 St Asaph St
Free entry!  Koha welcome for the ChCh winners to travel to Wellington.


Rules for NZ National Poetry Slam 

  • 3 minutes or less with no minimum time (10 second grace period before point’s deduction) 
  • Time starts when poet speaks, however while poets can have time to settle and adjust microphone etc, this time is not limitless; ideally a poet should start after 10 seconds. 
  • Original poems only 
  • No props no music no costumes (i.e. clothing related to the content of your poem) 
  • In the case of a tie a slam off will be required 
  • Random draw, for performance order. 

Judging and scoring 

  • 5 Audience Judges (chosen by MC and/or organiser) display score cards 0-10 (Decimal points allowed) 
  • Top and bottom scores drop off and total of remaining 3 scores is the total 
  • If Poet goes over grace period MC or Timekeeper to ask scorer to mark down points after the judges score… (Half a point penalty for every 10 seconds over time) 
  •  After 4 minutes the MC can shut down the poet 
  • 'Sacrificial Poet' (non-competing) to start the night, to help calibrate scores. 
  • Slams are equally about writing, performance and audience response. 
  • Slammers should have at least 3 poems, as for the Regionals and NZ Slam there will be three rounds…

Thursday, August 28, 2014


SURVIVOR: POETRY is back!  We have our ten castaways, we have our appointment with destiny!

$12 / $10 entry
Ticket sales here

Don't miss the best mash up of live poetry, performance anxiety, and reality TV you'll ever see.

And for a wee taste of the auditions that happened a few weeks ago (along with the musings of your Catalyst Crew) check this out:

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Words of War - music and poetry at the Court Theatre

We're proud to be a part of this event at the Court Theatre (and encouraged by their desire to be a part of the performance poetry movement in Christchurch).  Below is a letter from Philip Aldridge and Dan Pengelly of the Court Theatre explaining a little more about the event this week.

Tena Koutou,
We would like to invite you along to an intimate afternoon of poetry at The Court Theatre. This is the first Forge foray into poetry and we hope to make an annual event exploring words, voice and the world around us. Featuring poets from Christchurch’s professional poetry collectives Catalyst and Lady Poets as well as our very own Ross Gumbley and Philip Aldridge.
Words of War
Europe, Gallipoli, Vietnam, Afghanistan, Serbia and Iraq… Poetry inspired and impassioned by WAR.
On Sunday two spaces will hold words, voices and stories inspired and impassioned by War.
The afternoon starts at 4pm with music by Amy Grace. Two 40 minute sessions of poetry will take place in The Pub Charity Studio and The Chapman Tripp Stage. From raw and fresh verses of Tusiata Avia to the beautiful crafted words of Kipling, there will be something for everyone.
Sunday 3 of August
The Court Theatre: Pub Charity Studio & Chapman Trip Stage
Tickets $10 for all ages, available from The Court Theatre
Nine poets reciting poetry from World War 1 to Iraq
The bar will be open, includes 20 minute interval
This is a Forge at The Court event. Not sure what that means? The Forge is our boutique theatre brand that goes alongside The Court Theatre main season. Offering intimate and creative theatre experiences for Canterbury audiences. This is our playground for innovation and things that are a little bit different.
We would love to see you there.
Regards and aroha,
Philip Aldridge, Chief Executive of The Court Theatre &
Daniel Pengelly, Associate Director of The Court Theatre

Tuesday, July 15, 2014


WORD Christchurch Writers & Readers Festival 2014

 Wow! Has two years gone by already?  It's that time again, when the Writers Festival hits town and this time it's got a brand new look and is more ambitious than ever - 68 events over 5 days.  2014 also sees a much bigger spotlight on poetry and we are proud to be presenting not one but two shows this year.

Catalyst Road Show reprise: My Republic 
Saturday 30 August - 9pm - The Darkroom - Free entry!

Yep, we're bringing back the popular poetical, musical road trip especially for the WORD Christchurch 2014 festival. Featuring some of the stand-out performance poets from our 2013 slow tour of the city suburbs and one special guest, reunited with Doc Drumheller on guitar, the original seven Road Shows showcased some amazing performance poets in celebration of ten years of Catalyst journals and open mics.  The 2013 shows came with seven limited edition chapbooks (collector's items now!) and culminated with the launch of Catalyst volume 10.  Now this special one-off Road Show brings to festival audiences a taste of this multi-collaboration, song and poem experience and launches the 11th volume of Catalyst 'My Republic'.  Featured poets: Andy Coyle; Ben Brown; Ciaran Fox; Kimberley Holmes and special Auckland guest Grace Taylor of Rising Voices fame accompanied by Doc Drumheller on guitar and songs.

Survivor: Poetry 
Sunday 31 August - 6pm
Rydges Savoy West - $12/$10 entry

Yep that's right, it's the return of the infamous, cut-throat and downright unfair performance poetry competition. Stranded before a live audience, 10 poets have only their guts and wits to see them through a series of challenging rounds of poetical mayhem - only to have to run the gauntlet of Tribal Council. Who will outlast them all to become our third ever 'Survivor Poet'?

So we're looking for fearless (or foolhardy) poets to be our castaways - auditions will be held at our next open mic on the 5th August - 7pm at the Twisted Hop in Woolston. We'll put up a separate post about this to remind you. Come on, you know you want to!

Saturday, June 28, 2014

Next Catalyst open mic

The open mic moves to the Twisted Hop in Woolston!  Come join us for some mighty fine craft ale and food - and of course, poetry!  First Tuesday of the month.

Catalyst Poetry Open Mic
Tuesday 1st July, 7.30pm
Twisted Hop, 616 Ferry Rd, Woolston
entry by koha.