Works in Progress #4

Tues 21st September, 2021. All Saints Centre, Lewes

Fourth in a series of LLL midweek rehearsed readings showcasing new writing for theatre by local playwrights. A chance to see exciting new plays at an early stage of development and chat with the writers and performers. Works performed included: Go to Gate by Catherine Smith, Butterfly Kicks by Louise Monaghan and Songs of the Chambermaids by Mark C. Hewitt. Actors were Leann O'Kasi, Melissa Sirol, Marta Carvalho, Martina Moss-Clarke and Benjamin Lane.

An El Dorado Evening

with John Agard, Grace Nichols & Keith Waithe

Fri 6 August 2021. All Saints Centre, Lewes.

Three top Guyanese Sussex-based artists - poets John Agard and Grace Nichols and virtuoso flautist Keith Waithe - came together to present an evening of poetry and music that featured first performances of new writing created during the months of covid lockdown in 2020/21 as well as combining in various exuberant one-off collaborations to celebrate the cultural style and flair of Guyana and the Caribbean. (Photo of John Agard © Sara Roque Peres)

Labyrinth

Weds 4 August 2021. All Saints Centre, Lewes.

A second chance to see this exhilarating physical theatre production performed by Portuguese actress Marta Carvalho in a new English version by LLL's Artistic Director Mark C. Hewitt as it is revived for further touring in the tail-end of the covid pandemic. The original Portuguese text (‘Labirinto de Amor e Morte’) was written for Marta by Galician theatremaker Moncho Rodriguez and toured extensively in Portugal, Spain and Brazil. An intimate audience was once again blown away by the power and passion of the monologue: “Wow! What a powerhouse performance. Beautiful imagery and poetry!”

Against the Current

Tues 3 August 2021. All Saints Centre, Lewes.

What do the arts mean to people in prison? David Kendall, co-director of Penned Up - an organisation which runs literature festivals in prisons - talked to Steve Newark (live) and Gary Mansfield (on a Zoom video as he was in quarantine) about precisely this and about how the Penned Up prison literature festivals work. Both Steve and Gary are ex-prisoners whose lives were transformed by their encounters with writing and the arts while serving time. The event also looked at the broader value of the arts in supporting rehabilitation and the mental health of those serving time. Penned Up was recognised nationally in The Big Issue's list of Top 100 Changemakers of 2020.

Prison Dialogues

Fri 2 July, 2021. All Saints Centre, Lewes.

Lewes performance of LLL Productions' Prison Dialogues, written and directed by Mark C. Hewitt with performances by Sonny JaitehConnor MillsAraba JaneLeann O'Kasi and Sarah J. Lewis. “Utterly convincing. 5 excellent performances.” (Audience feedback,)

New Poetry: Martina Evans / Sonya Smith

Tues 29 June, 2021. All Saints Centre, Lewes.

LLL's first event in Lewes for over 16 months and the first event at this venue to happen in 2021. A socially distanced audience celebrated two new collections of poetry published during the last few months of lockdown. Irish poet Martina Evans read from her book American Mules (Carcanet) and Sussex poet Sonya Smith from Every Robin I Never Quite Saw (Tall Lighthouse).

Prison Dialogues

28th May - 3rd June, 2021. Brighton Fringe Festival.

Launch of a new play by LLL's Artistic Director Mark C. Hewitt, premiered over a one week run at the Lantern Theatre in Brighton. The work, consisting of alternating male and female dialogues, featured outstandng performances by Sonny Jaiteh, Connor Mills, Araba Jane, Leann O'Kasi and Sarah J. Lewis. Audience feedback was overwhelmingly positive: “Wonderful writing and performance, captivating changes of pace and moments of stillness, so effective. Moving and totally believable. And funny.”

SNOW Q

Tues 18 February, 2020. All Saints Centre, Lewes.

Preview of a new live literature production with text by poet Maria Jastrzębska, written in the extraordinary hybrid language of Ponglish (half-English / half-Polish). Snow Q reimagines Hans Christian Andersen’s story of The Snow Queen, combining words, music and visuals to explore contemporary themes of social isolation, gender, sexuality, migration and exile. The work focuses on Gerda's quest to find Kai and the acerbic interventions of Crow, performed by actresses Rita Suszek and Maria Ziółkowska, directed by LLL's Artistic Director, Mark C. Hewitt, with music by Peter Copley and film sequence by Wendy Pye.

The Lost Images of the Windrush Generation

Weds 4 February, 2020. All Saints Centre, Lewes.

Colin Grant - author of Homecoming: Voices of the Windrush Generation - in conversation with photographer, Howard Grey. Showing the images as projections, the two discussed the remarkable story of a collection of photographs (taken by Howard Grey) of Caribbean migrants at Waterloo Station in 1962, which were presumed unprintable for over 50 years and laid aside until new digital techniques allowed these important images to be salvaged. Photo © Howard Grey 2020.

Lemn Sissay

+ Amanthi Harris + Pam and De Femmes

Weds 11 December, 2019. All Saints Centre, Lewes.

In a revival of LLL's Cabaret Sessions, Lemn Sissay headlined, with the focus on his book about growing up in care, My Name is Why. The first half of the evening also featured local novelist Amanthi Harris - in conversation about her novel Beautiful Place - and multilingual songs from calypso to cabaret to tango from Pam and De Femmes.

Poetry in the Pub

Tues 26 November, 2019. Royal Oak, Lewes.

A welcome return to putting on a poetry event in a pub, and hopefully beginning a new series of events. A lovely atmosphere and lovely readings by three great poets: Martina Evans, Jackie Wills and Catherine Smith.

Works in Progress #3

Weds 30th October, 2019. All Saints Centre, Lewes

Third in a series of LLL midweek rehearsed readings showcasing new writing for theatre by local playwrights. Works performed included: Her Big Day by Louise Monaghan, Ripped Map by Neil Noon, Bangles by Josie Melia, and Prison Dialogues by Mark C. Hewitt. Actors were Leann O'Kasi, Araba Jane, Sarah J. Lewis, Sharon Lloyd, Martina Moss-Clarke and Samson Steer-Khan.

Labyrinth

Tues 15th October, 2019. All Saints Centre, Lewes

Physical theatre met live literature in this compelling monologue from Portugal which hovered ambiguously between murder and vivid fantasy. This was the first full preview of a new English version of the text by LLL's Mark C. Hewitt, devised and performed by Portuguese actress Marta Carvalho. The original Portuguese text (‘Labirinto de Amor e Morte’) was written by Galician theatremaker Moncho Rodriguez and toured extensively by Marta Carvalho in Portugal, Brazil and parts of Spain. Music was composed by Narciso Fernandes, featuring the voice of Clarisse Fernandes.

One Fine Day

Tues 17 September, 2019. All Saints Centre, Lewes

Newhaven-born writer and broadcaster Ian Marchant on the discovery that his great grandfather seven generations back was the notable diarist, Thomas Marchant, whose diaries record everyday life in Sussex exactly 300 years ago. A story of economic migration, civil war, fish farming, dung carrying, hangovers, high politics, low morals, suicide, madness, and lardy cake.

Lives of the Artists #5 - Carolyn Trant

Lasting Impressions

Tuesday 10 September 2019: All Saints Centre, Lewes

Lives of the Artists #5. Painter/Maker Carolyn Trant in conversation with LLL's Artistic Director Mark Hewitt, discussed her specialism in making 'artists books' and how she has explored images and words in a range of ways from sculptural objects and installations to hand-cut and printed woodblock books., showing images throughout and with a display of some of her acclaimed artist's books. An LLL series in which artists talk about how and why they do what they do in the way that they do it. 

Imagine Like a Crow

Thurs 23 May 2019: Birley Centre, Eastbourne College 

Special event raising awareness of the problem of suicide and  suffering in silence, especially amongst young people. The evening featured a range of artistic responses. Multimedia theatre: This is always the result by Gus Watcham; the launch of a specially commissioned track by award-winning songwriter Elsa Hewitt (pictured) with accompanying music video by Arts Award students from Eastbourne College; and spoken word, including 'Crow' poems from Snow Q by Maria Jastrzebska performed by Rita Suszek. MC was Leo Sedgley. An event supporting CALM - the campaign against living miserably. Part of LLL's Outside Eye season.

REDDER

Fri 26th April, 2019. Lewes All Saints Centre

A new live literature production written and performed by poet Gus Watcham. Little Red Riding Hood is 66 and looking for love! In this fantastical one woman show, Gus turns the fairy tale upside down and shakes out all the bits to create a disturbed and darkly humorous psychodrama for our times. Directed by LLL's Mark C. Hewitt as part of the Outside Eye season.

Linton Kwesi Johnson

Tues 16 April, 2019. All Saints Centre, Lewes

Writing Reggae. Poet Linton Kwesi Johnson gave his own unique take on the history and poetics of reggae culture, taking in its oral storytelling traditions and use of the Bible as well as the development of black consciousness and dub lyricism; and how his connection witn reggae influenced the evolution his own career as a poet and musician. Part of LLL's Outside Eye season.

Works in Progress

Tues 9 April, 2019. All Saints Centre, Lewes

Second in a series of LLL midweek rehearsed readings featuring new writing for theatre by local playwrights performed by professional actors. Works performed included: In the Hollows by Neil NoonA Bit Like Love by Louise Monaghan and Prison Dialogues by Mark C. Hewitt. Actors were Stewart James Barham, Christien Bart-Gittins, Leann O'Kasi and Sarah J. Lewis. Part of LLL's Outside Eye season.

Caribbean Sightlines

with John Agard, Grace Nichols & friends

Sat 23 March 2019, All Saints Centre, Lewes.

Words, music and Caribbean bites with poets John Agard and Grace Nichols, plus poet and spoken word artist Zena Edwards and Trinidadian poet/artist John Lyons. With songs from Calypso and other traditions by Pam and de Femmes and food by Irma's Kitchen. Part of LLL's Outside Eye season.