Image with text that reads "So Say So, a night of poetry, music and new collaborations and open mic" this is followed by the date, 14 September 8pm and "poetry, steven cambedn (polar bear), music basciville, host stephen james smith". In the cornor of hte image is a picture of steven camden smiling at camera wearing a hat.

So Say So is a monthly event focusing on poetry, storytelling and music hosted by poet Stephen James Smith in the Wexford Arts Centre. Each month a renowned national (or international) poet headlines and is accompanied by local musicians Cillian and Lorcan Byrne of *Basciville in a never before seen collaboration. At each event there is also a 5-Word-Challenge open mic section, which is open to all.

In September and November 2023 British Council Ireland were delighted to support two such itterations of So Say So, where UK artists were brought over to Wexford to emerse themselves in the local community through school visits, and perform as part of the monthly So Say So events!

The first of these artists was the UK poet Steven Camden (Polarbear), who visited Wexford on 14 September 2023. As part of this visit. which was sponsored by British Council, he visited a local secondary school, where he spoke with second year students about the craft of creating poetry and read some of his poems to the students.

Steven Camden aka Polarbear is an internationally acclaimed spoken word artist, award winning writer and storyteller from Birmingham. Since first stepping on stage in 2004, he has performed his work and led creative projects from Manchester to Melbourne and Kuala Lumpur to California. He writes novels, plays, screenplays and poems celebrating his mixed heritage and the amazing people he grew up around. He is at his happiest in a room with people sharing and building stories, preferably with good food in the mix.

The second UK artist headlinging So Say So was Zaffar Kunail, who attending the event in Wexford on 22 November 2023. As part of this British Council funded trip he was able to stop by our offices to give some insight into his poetry collection Englands Green which you can view an exceprt from below!

Zaffar Kunial is a British poet born in Birmingham, who currently lives in Shipley, Yorkshire. His mother was English and his father is from Kashmir. Zaffar studied at the London School of Economics and later attended Michael Donaghy’s classes at City University. Kunial published a pamphlet in the Faber New Poets series in 2014 and was Poet-in-Residence at the Wordsworth Trust the same year. In 2011 he won third prize in the National Poetry Competition  with ‘Hill Speak’. Kunial works as a full-time 'Creative Writer' for Hallmark card in West Yorkshire.