Joelle Taylor (UK)

Joelle Taylor is the author of 4 collections of poetry and a novel. Her most recent collection C+NTO & Othered Poems won the 2021 T.S Eliot Prize and was the subject of a Radio 4 arts documentary Butch. C+NTO was nominated for the Rathbone Folio Prize, longlisted for the Ondaatje Prize, and won the 2022 Polari Book Prize. It was named by The Telegraph, the New Statesman, The Guardian, The White Review & Times Literary Supplement as one of the best poetry books of the year, and was DIVA magazine’s Book of the Month, as well as awarded 5 stars by the Morning Star. She completed a book tour of Australia including the Sydney Opera House in March 2022 and was Queensland Poetry Festival Poet in Residence (Digital) in 2023. C+NTO is currently being adapted for theatre with a view to touring. She is a co-curator and host of Out-Spoken Live, a resident at the Southbank Centre, and an editor at Out-Spoken Press. She has judged numerous literary prizes including the Forward Prize, the Jerwood Fellowship, the Polari Prize, and the Ondaatje Prize. Her novel of interconnecting stories The Night Alphabet will be published by RiverRun in Spring of 2024. She is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature, and the 2022 Saboteur Spoken Word Artist of the Year. 

Taylor has visited Estonia before; she first performed at Prima Vista in 2018 when Sirel Heinloo, one of the leaders of TarSlämm, asked her in an interview for Õpetajate Leht how she came to poetry. “Writing is just one step further from breathing and eating. It is an essential art of survival for me. Initially, I wrote to understand myself, to testify to myself. Now I write to bear witness to the world,” replied Taylor.

Photo: Joelle Taylor
Joelle Taylor

Tartu poetry slam TarSlämm final at Vilde ja Vine, featuring guest performer Joelle Taylor (UK)

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