Guest co-host Alix Edwards will be helping us out this month, when RARA celebrates International Dylan Thomas Day 2018 and also raises funds for PAPYRUS, a charity that works with young people to help foster hope for the future and suicide prevention. As always, RARA is a free open mic event and every reader will get a five minute slot to express themselves as they see fit. Engagement with the themes of this particular RARA is welcomed, but not compulsory, because RARA exists for you to to express yourself.
Donating to PAPYRUS is not compulsory, but anything you can spare will be gratefully received and go towards giving vulnerable young people hope for the future
ABOUT ALIX EDWARDS
Alix Edwards is a writer, artist, photographer, parent and has also recently created COMPANY OF WORDS, her own open mic spoken word event in Cardiff, after becoming a RARA regular who is delighted to hear what people have to say for themselves from behind a mic, in the form of stories, songs, poems, monologues, anything you write! so come along just to listen, come to sign up for a free slot and read, come along, enjoy!
Self expression, however you do it, is an act of self emancipation, a declaration of intent, actively stating ‘This is me and what I do and who I am. I am here, I exist! Celebrate Dylan Thomas Day with us by reading his words, or your words inspired by his words, or anything you have written that you damn well please, because open mic means your free five minute slot is yours, and RARA will listen to you!
RARA was originally created by poet Julie Pritchard, but for most of its existence has been run, hosted and promoted by the dedicated duo of Dave Daggers and Will Ford. As of April 2018 the team has expanded to include the additional energy, creativity of:
Liz Marsh, Ria Kodosaki and Bryan Marshall
PHOTOS OF THE RARA TEAM COMING SOON
The team is made up of RARA enthusiasts who simply kept showing up to read their own stuff and support other readers because they love it so much!
But why do they love RARA?
RARA gives every reader a five minute slot, whether they have never read their work publicly ever before or they are published old hands at working a crowd.
New voices are especially welcome and some of those reading at RARA for the first time ever have gone on to become regular readers and performers at RARA and several other spoken word events in Cardiff that have arrived in the last few years, including JUKE, COMPANY OF WORDS and the recently birthed MILD EXTRAVAGANZA (look ’em up on Facebook, this blog can’t do everything for you!)
For over three years Dave and Will have mixed things up a little compared to most other open mic nights by inviting any regular attendee to act as guest host or co-host if they please and many have taken on this challenge and most have loved every minute of it. Some have loved it less, admittedly, but they might never have dared to even try if it weren’t for the welcoming and nurturing atmosphere RARA consciously creates, which encourages people to try things they might never dare at other events.
RARA has occasionally dedicated an evening to a particular charity, although this is not a stated aim for RARA. However, RARA is an event that is open to suggestions from attendees, so that in addition to being a place where people can express themselves, it can seek to help a little here and there. If you have read this far, you will already know that the RARA for May will be asking for support for PAPYRUS, although we do not demand that support in order to take part. RARA has always been a free to attend, free to take part event and that is how it will remain for the foreseeable future.
Many RARA attendees have been published, whether traditionally or by more modern routes and RARA is very open to promoting the work of its attendees because at all stages of the path writers are on encouragement and support is still needed and various pamphlets, booklets, full collections, whether poetry or novels have been launched/promoted as part of a book tour at RARA.
We would usually ask people to come along a few times at least before launching something so friends and connections can be made and word can get about that work will be offered for sale, because this helps us to help you get the most out of offering your wares at a long running monthly event where there is no affiliation to a particular publisher, no entry fee, no grants or other outside funding, an event that exists and continues purely because the team and those who attend make it possible.
Many RARA regulars also attend the regular writing workshop ROATH WRITERS and have work featured in the annual anthology of ROATH WRITERS that is a very popular publication filled with writers who may not always be from Roath, but come to write, read, perform in the many events and festivals that take place in the lovely Roath.
RARA is THE most regular reading/performing spoken open mic opportunity in Roath, happening on the second Monday of every single month of the year, culminating in a Special Edition in December (in 2017, with the theme of PIRATE CHRISTMAS)
RARA is here for you to show what you can do, and who you are. How you do it at RARA is up to you, as long as you do it using words, for RARA is about using your words to speak your truth or tell your story, whether it is literally your own tale or the magical weavings of your imagination.
RARA is also here to challenge you to entertain us all, if that is how you use your words. Make us laugh, make us feel what you feel, see the world as you see it, let us into your world at RARA Where you are also invited into the worlds within every reader or performer, for the more of ourselves we can share, the more we become a community, a melting pot of ideas and perspectives, all sharing the same space and all listening to each other, not just waiting for our turn to speak. Applause for you is guaranteed, whether you reveal your heart and soul or attempt to tickle every available funny bone.
As serious or as not so serious as you wish is what RARA invites you to be.
IF YOU HAVE WORDS, RARA WANTS TO HEAR THEM
blog by William Dean Ford, who has a WEBSITE
Come to RARA, join us, join Dave Daggers and Alix Edwards, support PAPYRUS if you wish, celebrate May 14 2018 as INTERNATIONAL DYLAN THOMAS DAY if you desire, bring your words of whatever kind, if you prefer. We will be happy to see you, and you’ll be glad you came!