Beginning on Thursday May 14 at 7pm, the Makar, the National Poet for Scotland, Jackie Kay will launch a weekly series of online literary and musical performances. Created and curated by Kay, Makar To Makar will showcase a line-up of established talent and emerging voices from Scotland and around the world. The names of an extraordinary set of guests will only be released on a weekly basis, with one week’s guest revealing who’ll be on the following week at the end of each show.
The season of readings is called Makar To Makar. ‘Makar’ a Scots word for ‘poet or bard’. With the lockdown closing literary festivals around the world, Kay was inspired to curate these events to entertain and accompany people in the era of social distancing. The writers and musicians are being paid, Makar to Makar supporting artists during a difficult period for performers.
The events will stream via the National Theatre of Scotland’s YouTube channel and its Facebook page every Thursday at 7pm for 16 weeks, each show lasting approximately 40 minutes. Audiences can tune in directly via the National Theatre of Scotland YouTube channel, the National Theatre of Scotland’s Facebook page or by clicking the home page link of Makar2Makar’s website (makar2makar.com). The events are free to enjoy.
Each event will be dynamic, varied and warm, with Kay hosting the show and chatting with the guests. Each show will usually feature one or two “makars” paired with a singer. Every week Jackie Kay will introduce and chat with her guest. Kay will be the first week’s performer, followed in week two by poet Don Paterson.
Jackie Kay says, ‘In these harrowing times it has been heartening to see just how much people need poetry, music, art, theatre. The impulse to be creative runs deep in us. It has been our saving grace throughout this crisis. Makar to Makar has been conceived to accompany people in their own homes – to offer solace and hope. A great mix of poetry and music – food for the soul.’
Makar to Makar is produced by National Theatre of Scotland in association with HOME Manchester and Edinburgh International Book Festival and the School of Arts and Media University of Salford.