In the basement of the Foundry, Old Street, London, from 18:30 to 23:30 on the 25th of March 2009, poets Becky Cremin and Ryan Ormonde documented the entire Openned poetry reading from before it started to well after it had finished. This reading was the eighteenth in the series. From this they produced a document called basemeta.
In some of the recordings of the 18th Openned night you can catch occasional glimpses of them or hear the gentle tap of typewriter keys as they produced the documentation.
basemeta was performed at the next Openned night and their performance of this document can be viewed here. However, the documentation also stands as a poem in its own right and is an excellent piece of work and is available here for free.
Published: October 2009
View free: PDF (18.4MB)
Openned / Land for Lajee Fundraiser. We heard around fifteen poets read in three-minute slots, all relevant & some intentionally so, & we saw a short film about the Aida camp & heard some short talks about the camp and the Lajee Centre. We were taken at our stations by the reverie wherein Steve Willey psyches himself up with Cobbing glossolalia strapping on his brown shinpads for another full day's football against the camp children. There was an auction and other stuff.
The only thing that didn't make me fucking ecstatic was the sense of a special occasion. Openned & other itinerary bezoars, like The Blue Bus, Utter!, Xing the Line, Penned in the Margins, Chlorine, and the stuff which happens in Cambridge, should regularly schedule mixtures of poetry and direct prosaic political and activist-administrative address. New nights too. If you want concrete suggestions, backchannel me.
Openned was another good one. Decent turnout this evening, perhaps due to the extra-high-profile readers. Here’s a quick recap:
Ensemble whose name I didn't catch first. Illness meant improv insert, skillfully achieved by good conducting and keen ears. My friend commented that in all the years he’s accompanied me to poetry events, this one fulfilled his need for woodwind, string, words and jazz hats. Bravo. But it wasn’t mere Jazz Club. It was, indeed, well-crafted sonically, and Steve did a good job, meeting crescendoes like Bruce Dickinson without the plane. He looks good in a hat.
This night was put on for the poet Jerome Rothenberg. At this reading the poets, Martin Dean / Caroline Bergvall / Openned mic (filled by Becky Cremin) and Carol Watts read, amongst others… possibly. Will Rowe had put us in touch with Rothenberg and there was a reading at Birkbeck late in the week. Rothenbergs reading was divided into two sections, an introductory ten minute section followed by a longer thirty minute section in the second half. The night was reviewed the next day by the Poet Ryan Ormonde (who later was to perform at Openned 12).