Luke Wright returns to the Norwich stage for the first time since 2019 at Interlude

We’ve all had our own way of coping with Lockdown. Luke Wright, hailed ‘the hardest working man in poetry’ embarked on a record breaking run of 100 online shows when the UK tour of his new show The Return of Logan Dankworth was cancelled. Staged on consecutive days, each show was different and they were seen by tens of thousands, including ‘celebs’ such as Shappi Khorsandi, Robin Ince and Libertines Carl Barât and Pete Doherty.

Now courtesy of Norwich Theatre’s Interlude tent and Norwich Arts Centre he’s preparing to step back onto to the Norwich stage for LUKE WRIGHT RETURNS, his first full set of mixed material in the city since March 2019.

‘Pulsating poetic story-telling’ The Guardian

In the 80 minute set, audiences can expect a healthy sprinkling of old favourites, alongside newly written material. Even while performing a show a day, Wright found time to do a lot of writing in the past few months.

‘I’ve had a pretty productive time over the lockdown period (between bouts of staring listlessly at walls and ceremoniously burning stacks of unused flyers)’ he said, ‘and I’m excited to share the fruits of this labour with the good people of Norwich. I’ve recently completed a new collection of poems, The Feel Good Movie of the Year to be published in early 2021 and I’ll be doing a number of pieces from the book at Interlude. These poems are quite unlike anything I’m written before, more personal, and dare I say it, quite moving too. On stage I’ll be using different staging for the more bombastic, humorous poems and a separate area of the stage set up to better perform the more intimate pieces.’

Luke is also excited about another new project (we said he was hard working!). ‘I’ve also been working on an album of spoken word songs with cutting edge Sheffield producer Cobbler. We’ve taken some of the best poems from the new collection and basically made pop songs. I’ll be debuting a couple of these in the Interlude Big Top. The first release from the album, Monster, has received airplay from BBC6 Music and is available to download now from https://lukewrightandcobbler.bandcamp.com/

‘Fierce, wistful, romantic and witty by turns, this is a sensational hour of poetry.’ ★★★★★ The Stage

The show is presented at the Chapelfield Gardens Interlude tent by Norwich Arts Centre who have had a long association with Wright.  ‘I saw Luke at his very first gig in Colchester’ said NAC Artistic Director Pasco Q Kevlin ‘and I’ve followed him since. I’m really pleased that as we gradually begin to present shows again Luke is performing one of the very first.’

Luke’s blistering verse and emotively impassioned delivery have led him to be described as ‘The Bard of Lockdown’ by the Daily Telegraph. Big-hearted and quick-witted, Wright’s poems have been lauded by everyone from Patti Smith to The Libertines and from Norwich MP Clive Lewis to Poet Laureate Simon Armitage. Truly a wordsmith and raconteur at the top of his game, a Fringe First winner, a Stage Award winner (for acting, no less!) and he’s been the Edinburgh Fringe’s favourite poet for fifteen years.

UEA alumni Wright has been writing and performing his work for 21 years, touring all over the world. He is acknowledged as one of Britain’s top stand-up poets and one of the principle architects of the now thriving spoken word scene. For 11 years he co-programmed the Poetry Arena at Latitude, and now curates poetry for Edinburgh International Book Festival. To date he has 8 books, and 5 (audio) albums of spoken word to his name.

‘A lyrical tour de force’ EDP

Luke has written and performed 12 full-length shows, winning multiple awards for his debut ‘verse play’ What I Learned from Johnny Bevan. He has been credited with making poetry relevant to a new generation and revitalising the spoken word touring circuit. He can often be seen opening for John Cooper Clarke, his verse documentaries on Channel 4 have been enjoyed by millions and his poems can be heard on BBC Radios 3 & 4, sometimes further afield.

‘Cool poems’ Patti Smith

Luke is an entertaining, witty eloquent and erudite interviewee. He is available to talk about the show, his upcoming book and album, Lockdown, performing 100 shows in as many days and his 21 years in the business. Contact Steve Forster as above for availabilities, review tickets and images. lukewright.co.uk
‘He must be on some kind of dope’ John Cooper Clarke

Luke Wright is always enjoyable to see in his rapid-fire performances of verse that tugs at all our hearts and is a favourite with Norwich audiences, so book early to be sure of a seat. Nobody wants to be outside the tent wishing they could see in! See an earlier Norwich Eye review here: http://norwicheye.co.uk/whats-on/norwich-eye-reviews-luke-wright-the-remains-of-logan-dankworth/

Listing:
The Return of Luke Wright
Show mixing old and brand-new material from ‘One of the funniest and most brilliant poets of his generation’ The Independent

12th September 8.30pm (80 minutes, no interval). Recommended for ages 12+
Norwich Interlude Chapelfield Gardens NR2 1RP
£15 (£12 concessions) 01603 630 000 www.norwichtheatre.org