Coorie-In Land, Hogmanay 2016.

Rally & Broad were delighted to be curating one of the Scot:Lands venues for 1st January 2016. A wonderful – and free – series of events that run on the cold, dreich afternoon of the first day of the New Year, providing solace, shelter, and beautiful, uplifting music, poetry, dance, performance art and more to the good peoples of Edinburgh and further afield. We themed our ‘land’ as ‘Coorie-In Land’ celebrating all things cosy and warm. Hence the pyjamas…

Our artists for the afternoon included Maud the Moth, Colin McGuire, Rachel Amey, Billy Liar, Skye Reynolds, A New International (Biff Smith and Caroline Evens), Calum Rodger and Hailey Beavis.

Also performing although not pictured as they were doing sterling work out in the Cafe space were performance artists Rose Ruane and Rebecca Green.


The Story of The Anti-Slam! (Featuring the annihilation of spoken word…)

‘Twas the week before Christmas, and all through Our House, poets were scurrying to complete their personas for the annihilation of our sacred verse. Like we just did there.

The Anti-Slam, brainchild of London based Varjack & Simpson, was the first of our ‘Takeover Editions’. The idea behind it is that 10 top spoken word acts take on a persona that they think epitomises the VERY WORST in spoken word, take part in a competitive slam, whereupon the VERY WORST poet wins. There is commentary from a judging panel, themselves also fictional characters; scorekeeping from Angry White Male (aka Bram E Gieben), hosting by Paula Varjack and Dan Simpson and finally, a winner….

The story in pictures follows. Warning: features cats, nappies and occasional dancing….

Our thirsty poets warm up backstage….


The awesome Erin and Katy await the baying crowds…


We prepare to hand over our event to Varjack & Simpson (sobbing internally)….


And then the Anti-Slam starts with a sacrifice by Angry White Male and his Angry White Verse!


Collating the scores for himself, Mr Male sets the standard of

unbiased recording of marks for the evening….


And we’re off! First up: Indy Sisive! (Catherine Wilson)


Duncan McWhirter! (Max Scratchmann)


Judgemental judgings from Broad, Rally, and the Former Godfather of Scottish Spoken Word, Mr Andrew Blair who, when he was 12 had a helluva lot of things happen to him that gave him many anecdotes to compare his experiences back then to how goddam awful the experience of hearing these poems was…..


Eli Tism! (Rachel Rankin) Broad can never be her friend, ye know…


Benny ‘Deadbeat’ Goodman! (Alec Beattie) “Utter filth.” (Everyone)


Dan is told to check his privilege by Angry White Male….


And then Kitty Muffin-top, sex-positive baker, on the wonders of yeast and, um, some other things too…… (We’ll never bake again….)


A crowd shot, to prove that the majority of our audience did not, at this point, leave…. (Thanks for the photo-shop, Chris Scott!) 😉


Kitty Cat took to the stage and bribed the judges with fluff and edible things for kitties. It worked, with a respectably terrible score from all 3 judges….


And then……










After several shots and some truly stupendous reaction from audience and panel alike, we moved on to Cent E. Mental (Lara S Williams) and her awfully twee, heartfelt (and bokey) love poems! Hm. Maybe they weren’t that bokey. Maybe we were still minding the subject matter of BEDWETTER’s (aka Tickle’s) slam poem….. Hm…..


Dan loses the will to ask for responses….


And Paula laughs at him. Or it might have been at a poet. We can’t remember. We’re still recovering.


On to penultimate poet @FredRAlexander on Twitter & Instagram! (Aka Freddie Alexander.) A hispter nightmare. Terrible marks. (That’s a good thing – are you keeping up? We almost weren’t by this point….)


And finally! DOUG TRIHARDER (Doug Garry) He was a bit bad really.



After some conferring, and Angry White Male continuing to attempt to address Dan’s privilege problems through the medium of scowly dance….. We had our three finalists! Kitty Muffintop, @FredRAlexander On Twitter & Instagram and Doug Triharder!





And, as if that wasn’t enough, we then had plenty of dancing and celebrations that it was AAAAAAAALLLLLLL OVER, with the absolutely stonking A New International!


And then we all went home and had nightmares.

THANK YOU to Paula Varjack, Dan Simpson, Bram E Gieben and all the Anti-Slammers for being such tremendously good sports in all of this thrilling nonsense! Massive thanks too to the brilliant audience. It was one of the funniest things we’ve ever seen – a perfect Takeover.

Follow Paula @paulavarjack and Dan @dansimpsonpoet to keep up-to-date with all of their other events in the UK.

We’re back on Fri 22 Jan in Edina and Sun 24 Jan in Glasgow. See ye then! xx



Introducing….The Anti-Slam Slammers!

 – Rally & Broad: The Takeover Editions #1 –

Fri 18th Dec, The Bongo Club, 66 Cowgate, Edinburgh 7pm.

£6 on the door, £5 in advance. Tickets  – here

(NB: Here is a picture of a mic, close-up. It is MANDATORY to accompany all articles on poetry slams with such an image. MANDATORY, WE SAY….) mic

We all know the importance of the Poetry Slam. Multiple poets, battling it out for lyrical glory and the perfect 10 marks from the judges, for everything from a book token to a place in the Scottish National Slam Championships. Maker of spoken word careers, breaker of egos and hearts, the slam is an integral and important part of any poetry ‘scene’….

And oh, how infinitely open to satire….. Which is exactly what The Anti-Slam, brain-child of London-based duo Paula Varjack & Dan Simpson do!


There Must Be Some Kinda Way Out of Here…Nov in pictures!

So, that was a glorious weekend of words, tunes and lyrical delight from TWELVE amazing acts! We joked, we thieved, businessmen they drank our wine, and we asked for clarification for what that joker actually said to the thief… Thanks to all involved!

Said The Joker To The Thief!!

EDINBURGH (Fri 20 Nov 2015)


And glowed like burning coal.

Rally & Broad ‘Tangled Up In Blue’ – Season 4 relaunch in Glasgow! With Blue Rose Code, Martin Figura, Helen Ivory, Cat Hepburn and The Miss’s, at Stereo, Sunday 25th October 2015. It were glorious. Even if the stage lights were a little wonky, making for an atmospheric kinda afternoon… 😉

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