The Poetry Hour
Bernard Kops, George Szirtes, Michelene Wandor
This was a moving event with readings and musings from three major poets. They may be about Budapest or the East End, film reels or music scores, philosophy or politics, reflections on love and death or the dilemmas of being Jewish.
Bernard Kops is one of Britain\'s most celebrated and prolific authors. He has also written more than forty plays for stage and radio, nine novels and two autobiographies.George Szirtes
A child refugee from Hungary in 1956, George Szirtes lives in the UK and published his first book of poems, The Slant Door, in 1979. It won the Faber Prize. He has published many since then, his collection, Reel, winning the T S Eliot Prize in 2004 for which he has been twice shortlisted since. His latest book is Fresh Out of the Sky (Bloodaxe 2021). Beside his English prizes he has been awarded various international ones for his own poetry and for his translations of Hungarian poetry and fiction, including The European Poetry Translation Prize, the Best Translated Book Prize in the USA and the Man Booker International Translation Prize for his work on the novels of László Krasznahorkai. His second book for children, In the Land of the Giants won the CLPE Prize for the best book of poems for children in 2012. He has written reviews and articles for major newspapers, programmes for the BBC and has edited a variety of books. His recent work with composers and performers includes poems for The Voice Project and the carol set by Richard Causton for the BBC broadcast Service of Carols at King’s College Chapel in 2015. His memoir of his mother, The Photographer at Sixteen, was awarded the James Tait Black Prize for Biography in 2020.
Michelene Wandor is a poet, playwright, fiction writer and musician. She is the first woman to have had a drama on one of the National Theatre’s main stages – The Wandering Jew, in 1987. Her radio drama includes original radio plays and dramatizations, the most recent,Tulips in Winter, about the Jewish philosopher, Spinoza. Her books about contemporary theatre include Carry On, Understudies: Theatre and Sexual Politics, and Postwar British Drama: Looking Back in Gender. She has made a CD of the music of Salamone Rossi, the 17th century Italian-Jewish composer. Her poetry collection, Musica Transalpina, was a Poetry Book Society Recommendation for 2006.