Irit Sela offers a systematic reading method that lets the text itself reveal how it works, how it can come to life, bringing us face to face with the true meaning of each word and how those words fit the ‘score’ of the piece. By looking at the text from different angles and practicing each angle orally, then reassembling it, the tempo, rhythm, energy, as well as the choice of an interpretative stance, prevent generalisation and cliché, while allowing poetic ambiguities to remain alive, effective and affective.
Working with Irit Sela can help with performance, but more than that, it gives writers a new angle from which to appraise and improve their own work. Through bringing to life the speech activity that takes place within a text, sometimes elusive or invisible, she goes on to focus on the interaction between the written word, the reader and the audience.
This innovative method is useful to writers of poetry and literary prose in the writing process, as well as to actors and musicians in understanding and delivering poetry in performance. You will need to bring all your energy and expect to come away exhausted but with many new ways of reading and enjoying the written word.
The workshop will involve a morning session working on published poems, and the afternoon session will be spent looking at some of your own poems.
Irit Sela is an Israeli translator and tutor who spent some of her childhood in the USA. She has a BA and BFA in theatre and an MA in literature, and she has been a producer, director and artistic advisor, among other roles, at a number of theatres and festivals in Israel, including Haifa Municipal Theater, Habima National Theater, Cameri Repertory Theatre, La Mama Israel and Akko Festival.
Her work in poetry includes the founding of the magazine Helicon, and the Society for the Advancement of Poetry in Israel, in 1990; the founding of the Arabic–Hebrew Poetry Workshops in 2001, and translation work on poetry to and from English. For ten years Irit was Artistic Director of a Eimon School project involved with composing music to Hebrew poetry. In 2016 The Voice off the Page was published in Hebrew; a new book in English is forthcoming. Irit joined Machsomwatch (Checkpoint Watch) in 2001, to monitor the Israeli Army’s activities in the occupied territories in the West Bank.
Saturday 16th September, 11am – 3.30pm, The Poetry School, Lambeth Walk
Places are limited and will be allocated on a first come, first serve basis. To reserve your place please email [email protected] with the email subject line Irit Sela Reading Workshop and your full name in the body of the email.