StAnza, Scotland’s International Poetry Festival has ended its eighteenth year on a high with organisers hailing it a huge success.
Festival Director Eleanor Livingstone said: “This has been another hugely successful run for StAnza and we’re delighted we were able to mark the festival’s eighteenth year in such a fitting way. The wonderful opening night show, Bedazzled: A Welshman in New York set the bar extremely high for what proved to be an exciting and inspiring four days celebrating poetry in all its forms.”
The festival was launched by Game of Thrones star Clive Russell who also appeared In Conversation on Saturday. Headline poets this year included Simon Armitage, Belfast’s inaugural Poet Laureate Sinéad Morrissey, Ian Duhig, New Zealand’s inaugural Poet Laureate Bill Manhire, Alice Notley and Paul Durcan. As well as showcasing some of the major literary talents from around the world, StAnza provides a stage for new and aspiring voices. Among this year’s newcomers were Agnes Török, Toby Campion, Kei Miller and recent winner of the Arts Foundation Spoken Word Award Hollie McNish.
StAnza prides itself on being a truly international event and this year was no different with poets from as far afield as Jamaica, New Zealand, the USA, Denmark, Sweden, Mallorca, Sardinia and the Faroe Islands. Paul Bush OBE, Chief Operating Officer for EventScotland said: “2015 has been another successful year for StAnza, attracting participants and visitors from around the world. Scotland is the perfect stage for events, and the strength of StAnza’s programme is testament to that fact.”
StAnza concludes today (Sunday) after four days of over 100 events including performances, readings, music, drama, talks, workshops and a masterclass, open mic events, films, exhibitions and installations involving 70 artists and thousands of visitors in the Fife coastal town of St Andrews.
Eleanor Livingstone added: “Attendance has been excellent this year, and while it’s too early to give exact visitor numbers we are confident we have met our expectations. 2015 has been a fantastic festival for StAnza and while we’re sad that it is all over for another year we’re thrilled to end on such a high.”