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Sun, 02 Jul



A Friend’s Kitchen - an intimate stroll with Al-Saddiq Al-Raddi and friends

An intimate stroll through West London with Sudanese poet Al-Saddiq Al-Raddi as he recites poetry.

A Friend’s Kitchen - an intimate stroll with Al-Saddiq Al-Raddi and friends
A Friend’s Kitchen - an intimate stroll with Al-Saddiq Al-Raddi and friends

Time & Location

02 Jul 2023, 14:00 – 15:00

London, Queensway, London W2, UK

About the event


Poetry Translation Centre and Shubbak Festival present an intimate stroll with Sudanese poet Al-Saddiq Al-Raddi as he recites poetry from Queensway underground to the site of what was until recently the Saqi Bookshop, a landmark of Arabic literature.

Born in Khartoum, Sudan, Al-Raddi has lived in exile in London since 2012. His new collection, A Friend’s Kitchen, emerged in the aftermath of his arrival, when he was separated from his wife and children for nearly five years. During late, uncertain nights awake in a strange city, he would write brief, mystical, often stream-of-consciousness texts to post on Facebook, his primary means of communication with loved ones in Khartoum. The midnight musings soon developed into poems.

Al-Raddi and his translators, Bryar Bajalan and Shook, will take us on a journey through selections from his poetry collection that relive his experience of the city in those early days. Expect readings in Arabic and English in this one-off, intimate event.

**Please note - this is an outdoor event, walking in public spaces. There will be two sessions on the afternoon of Sunday 2 July, at 2pm and 4pm, lasting up to an hour. Tickets are priced in three categories on a 'pay what you can' basis - please select the ticket type that you can afford.

About the speakers:

Al-Saddiq Al-Raddi has touched audiences worldwide with his imaginative approach to poetry and for the delicacy and emotional frankness of his lyrics. His poetry is concerned with the rich cultural and linguistic diversity of Sudan and its complex history.

Saddiq's first poetry collection Songs of Solitude was published in 1996 (second edition, 1999). He has also published The Sultan's Labyrinth (1996) and The Far Reaches of the Screen... (1999 & 2000); all three collections were published in one volume as Saddiq's collected poems in Cairo in 2009.

Bryar Bajalan is a writer, translator and filmmaker presently pursuing a PhD in Arabic and Islamic Studies at the University of Exeter. His work as a translator from the Arabic and Kurdish has appeared in Ambit, Modern Poetry in Translation and on the Poetry Foundation website, and his present projects include the translation of poets displaced from Shingal during the Islamic State’s genocide of the Êzîdî and the collection of oral histories in Mosul.

Shook is a poet and translator whose work has focused on increasing the visibility of writers and communities yet to be represented in English. Their most recent translations are Jorge Eduardo Eielson’s Room in Rome and Pablo d’Ors’ The Friend of the Desert.

About the organisers:

The Poetry Translation Centre was set up in 2004 and is the only UK organisation dedicated to translating, publishing and promoting contemporary poetry fro Africa, Asia and Latin America. We introduce extraordinary poets from around the world to new audiences through books, online resources and bilingual events. We champion diversity and representation in the arts, and forge enduring relationships with diaspora communities in the UK. We explore the craft of translation through out long-running programme of workshops which are open to all.

Shubbak Festival is the UK’s premier festival of contemporary Arab arts and cultures. Shubbak Festival is taking place across London and key UK locations throughout 23rd June – 9th July 2023.

Cutting-edge artists feature alongside distinguished names in its ambitious programmes of premieres and new commissions. With a vibrant mix of visual arts, film, music, theatre, dance, literature and debates, Shubbak showcases the diversity and innovation of contemporary Arab arts and cultures, and celebrates what makes it distinctive to itself.

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