Save the date 2021 Festival 21-31 October

Home-made Poetry Part 6


‘Iceland Poppies’ written by Ruth Dallas, read by Niamh Blackman


Ruth Dallas (1919-2008) was born in Invercargill. She left secondary school at age 15 and worked as an army officer and milk tester, choosing her maternal grandmother’s surname as a pen-name for her first published poems in 1946. Ruth’s first collection was published in 1953 and she moved to Dunedin the following year, where she spent the rest of her life. She received an honorary doctorate from Otago University in 1978, and was made a CBE in 1989.

Niamh Blackman is actor, teacher and writer from Tauranga. Niamh trained at the Royal Central School of Speech and Drama in London and since graduating has been a part of many theatre projects and BBC voiceover work. She is the co-director of Off Track Theatre, whose debut show ‘Platform 4’ is due to be performed at the John Thaw Studio in Leicester Square, London. She is delighted to contribute to this Tauranga Arts Festival project.

‘Iceland Poppies’ written by Ruth Dallas, read by Niamh Blackman

'Poem to a mouse about to be caught in a trap' written bu Elizabeth Smither, read by Michael Ralph

Elizabeth Smither is a poet, novelist and short story writer who was the 2002 Poet Laureate. Her most recent award came in 2018 for her collection ‘Night Horse’, which won the poetry category of the 50th Ockham New Zealand Book Awards. Elizabeth, who has lived in New Plymouth all her life, became a Member of the New Zealand Order of Merit in 2004. She was a guest at the 2011 Tauranga Arts Festival.

Michael Ralph was born and educated in Tauranga but has been resident in Melbourne for many years. Dancing since the age of 4, Michael trained in Tauranga and Melbourne. He has gone on to become a performer, including in a major international touring production of ‘Cats’, an award-winning choreographer, director, and a teacher whose work is seen on television and in theatres in Australia.

‘Poem to a mouse about to be caught in a trap’ written by Elizabeth Smither, read by Michael Ralph

‘When I am in Doubt’ written by Glenn Colquhoun, read by Katharine Blackman

Glenn Colquhoun is a GP, poet and children's writer. His debut poetry collection, ‘The Art of Walking Upright’, won Best First Book of Poetry at the 2000 New Zealand Book Awards. In 2003 he won the Poetry Category and became the first poet to win the Readers' Choice Award. His most recent work is the BWB Text ‘Late Love: Sometimes doctors need saving as much as their patients’ (2017). Visit Glenn’s website.

Katharine Blackman is a Tauranga-based mother of four, all involved in music and dance as they grew up, psychologist and part-time poetry reader!

‘When I am in Doubt’ written by Glenn Colquhoun, read by Katharine Blackman