Sunday 19 March
The Butcher Boy
Partnership event with Irish Arts Foundation and Hyde Park Picture House
Ireland,1962. In a remote village, 12-year-old Francie Brady escapes his alcoholic father, Benny and mentally unstable mother, Annie, by retreating into a haze of daydreams, relying on his ‘blood brother’ Joe as his sole link to the outside world.
Adapted from Patrick McCabe’s 1992 novel of the same name The Butcher Boy strikingly explores the world of a young boy existing in the margins of society, dancing along the edge of the real and unreal, torn into dangerous territory by anger and a desire for revenge.
Directed by Neil Jordan, Produced by Redmond Morris and Stephen Woolley. Screenplay by Patrick McCabe and Neil Jordan. The film won the Silver Bear for Best Director at the 48th Berlin International Film Festival.
Tickets £7.00/£5.50 concessions
Tuesday 14 March
Partnership event with Films at HEART
The Grump (Finnish: Mielensäpahoittaja) is a 2014 Finnish comedy film directed by Dome Karukoski, in which the main character is The Grump, a cranky old man, created by the Finnish author Tuomas Kyrö. The film is based on a 2014 novel by Kyrö, the third volume by the author, in which this character appears.
The film stars Antti Litja as Mielensäpahoittaja a.k.a. the Grump, Petra Frey, Mari Perankoski, and Iikka Forss.
The film tells the story about how a stubbornly traditional eighty-year-old farmer -
whose social attitudes verge on the prehistoric - raises hell when he is forced to move in with his miserable, city-dwelling son and successful daughter-in-law.
8.00pm HEART Centre
Tickets only on the door
£6/£5 concessions/£4 members
Tuesday 7 March
The Lightless Sky
Partnership event with Leeds Libraries Read Regional
Like so many of the migrants we hear about, he endured a terrifying, life-threatening journey on a tiny boat in the Mediterranean, braved the brutality of those who should care for children, and spent a desolate month in the camp at Calais.
Here in Britain he was fostered, went to a good school, worked hard and won a place at a top university.
‘To risk my life had to mean something. Otherwise what was it all for?’ Gulwali Passarlay was sent away from Afghanistan at the age of twelve, after his father was killed in a gun battle with the US army.
Gulwali was chosen to carry the Olympic torch in 2012. He wants to tell his story.
7.15pm Headingley Library
‘An extraordinary man - achieving against all odds.’ Jon Snow, Channel 4 News
Wednesday 22 March
Partnership event with Headingley Enterprise and Arts Centre (HEART)
Do you know your Dickens from your Dostoevsky or your Angela Carter from your Raymond Carver?
Then come along and test your knowledge of all things relating to books.
HEART Centre Manager Mike will be the Quizmaster par excellence. Be prepared for his demon picture rounds!
There will also be a raffle. What’s not to like?
8.00pm HEART Centre, Bennett Road
£1 per person - max of 5 in team - pay at the event All proceeds to ‘Support HEART’
Monday 13 March
Strange Encounters: Paranoia and British Science Fiction Cinema
Partnership event with Café Scientifique
Robert Shail will explain, in an illustrated talk, how Science Fiction, whether in literature or cinema, has often been used as a vehicle to express contemporary anxieties.
This was never more the case than in the 1950s and 1960s when a cycle of American science fiction films including Invasion of the Body Snatchers (1956) and Them! (1954) gave voice to Cold War anxieties and the threat of nuclear catastrophe.
These films are well known but Professor Shail’s talk will focus on the more neglected area of British science fiction cinema of the same period.Key films include the John Wyndham adaptations Village of the Damned (1960) and The Day of the Triffids (1962), and the recently revived The Day the Earth Caught Fire (1961). These films bring a peculiarly British quality to the genre,with strange encounters taking place against the backdrop of sleepy villages and cosy suburbs.
7.30pm New Headingley Club,
Tickets £3 only on the door
Tuesday 21 March
Partnership event with local creative writing groups
Sponsored by Workers Education Association
11.00am HEART Centre,
Free - donations invited for refreshments
Once again we are delighted to welcome two local groups of creative writers - from Headingley and from the Osmondthorpe Hub - to take the plunge and share their work with us.
Dark tales? Wry poems? A drama? Short stories with a twist? Or just an entertaining excerpt from life writing? An eclectic selection of pieces to fascinate, amuse or arouse your curiosity.
Friday 17 March
Do you still love to tread the boards? Love open mic events? If you are under thirty, or okay if you look under thirty, this is your
chance to perform. It could be poetry, or song, or stand-up comedy, in a group or on your own. If you think you’ve got it, then flaunt it!
At the last LitFest, there was an astonishing range of acts for this wildly popular event.
There’s no age limit for the audience.
Get in touch now to make sure you are on the list if you want to perform.
with all the details.
7.30pm Heart Centre
Under 18s free, adults £5
Saturday 18 March
Pitch and Pen
Take the chance to pitch to a team of publishing industry professionals?
The winning pitcher(s) will be invited to submit a synopsis and sample of their work for consideration by either Valley Press based in Scarborough, or Hebden Bridge based Bluemoose Books.
The panel of judges will be made up of:
• Kevin Duffy - Bluemoose Books
• Jamie McGarry - Valley Press
• Alison Taft - Novelist and Editor Places are limited.
For further details and to apply to pitch please email LitFestpitchnpen@gmail.com
Ever wondered whether that idea you have for a novel, or a poetry or short story collection could fly?
4.00pm New Headingley Club
£5 to pitch £2 to attend
Saturday 18 March
Yorkshire Anthology Launch
Anna Chilvers: Tainted Love and East Coast Story
Valley Press's long awaited 'Yorkshire Anthology', for which poets around the world were asked
to write on any subject or topic, while keeping a connection with Yorkshire, creating the most eclectic book about Yorkshire ever pieced together. Featuring readings from contributors, and discussion with the editors including Jamie McGarry.
Anna Chilvers discusses her novel ‘Tainted Love’ and her novel in progress ‘East Coast story’.
Tainted Love is a modern gothic tale of how old stories can unravel people's lives but love however tainted can sometimes heal.
East Coast Story. In 657AD St. Etheldreda, a princess of Anglia and Queen of Northumbria, fled from St Abbs in Scotland to Ely Catherdral, around 500 miles. In 2015 Anna followed in her footsteps and walked the same distance as inspirational research for her next novel.
7.30pm New Headingley Club,
Monday 6 March
Dinner with Montalbano
Luca Zingaretti and Andrea Camilleri
During the past three LitFests, the Salumeria has hosted highly successful dinners with
some of the greats of Italian literature.This time, we move on to the Sicilian detective Inspector Montalbano, played in TV versions by Luca Zingaretti, pictured here with the man who wrote the novels - Andrea Camilleri.
Montalbano’s adventures are wildly popular in Italy, where fans often talk and write about what he loves to eat – he is very demanding. This makes him the ideal focus of an event devoted to food and literature.
You can relish the cooking and listen to Gigliola Sulis and Richard Wilcocks, who will talk about Sicily and Camilleri’s work, read extracts and draw attention to some of the featured menus.
Partnership Event with Salvo’s Salumeria
7.00pm Salvo’s Salumeria,
£15 from Salvo’s
Book by phone or online 0113 275 8877
Friday 24 March
Mark Connors at The Chemic
Partnership event with Word Club
Open mic slots will be available.
Mark Connors is a widely published poet who won the Ilkley Literature Festival Open Mic Competition in both 2014 and 2015. His debut pamphlet, Life is a Long Song (OWF Press, 2015) and debut novel, Stickleback (Armley Press, 2016) are both now in their second editions.
Mark runs Word Club and performs and comperes regularly at literature festivals.
Join Mark Connors and friends for a Word Club Special at The Chemic Tavern. Mark will be launching his first full length poetry collection, Nothing is Meant to be Broken, published by Stairwell Books.
7.30pm The Chemic Tavern,
9 Johnston St, Leeds LS6 2NG
Sunday 26 March
On the edge of the stage with Dave Robertson
Perhaps by jumping o'er times,
Turning the accomplishment of many years
Into an hourglass.
Could 60 odd years in the theatre be summed
up in little more than an hour?
Headingley LitFest thought so and commissioned actor/director. David Robertson to prove it.
So after recalling cliff-hanging moments, on and off stage, David launches into some of the scariest speeches of his career. Mostly they're the voices of scallywags, villains, masterminds – in fact, a whole clutch of edgy characters from the works of Marlowe, Shakespeare, Dickens, Chekhov, Ionesco and Pinter.
With comedy moments like The Batley Faust and music from the wonderful Retrolettes, we tempt you gently toward the edge of an abyss.
8.00pm New Headingley Club,
St Michael’s Road
Saturday 11 March
Trio Literati: The Exceedingly Good Writings of Mr Kipling
Musical duo Eleanor Rastall (soprano) and Jonathan Drummond (piano) add to the heady mix with settings of Kipling’s own poems and popular songs from the Empire and beyond.
7.30pm Headingley Parish Hall (St Michael's
Church Hall) St Michael's Road LEEDS LS6 3AW
Maggie Mash, Jane Oakshott and
Richard Rastall perform a sparkling
words-and-music entertainment on the works of Rudyard Kipling.
As a highly successful journalist Kipling travelled widely across a world on the brink of change. He wrote compulsively all his life: ‘my pen took charge and I, greatly admiring, watched it write for me far into the nights.’ Well-loved stories
and poems such as The Jungle Book,
The Man Who
Would Be King and
On the Road to Mandalay
are a mere fraction of his output - his war
reports, playlets and science fiction - now
virtually forgotten - are just as colourful.
Prepare to be surprised!
Wednesday 8 March
Schwa: I Am Alive (I Guess)
Poetry and music about the short walk from light to the edge of darkness - and back.
Schwa is Peter Spafford on piano/vocals and Richard Ormrod on at least nine instruments, joined by singer Jacqui Wicks. Here they set to music poems by Elizabeth Bishop, Emily Dickinson, Anne Sexton, and Edna St.Vincent Millais, besprinkled with original text by Peter Spafford.
Schwa’s ‘Threshold’ was premiered at Headingley Litfest in 2015 and is touring this spring for the second time, funded by The Arts Council.
7.30pm HEART Centre, Bennett Road
Richard Ormrod and
‘Vivid lyricism and authentic vocals blended with fantastic eclectic arrangements.’
Thursday 16 March
Streets of Darkness
Amit Dhand is a pharmacist who works in Headingley. He is also now known as an accomplished crime writer. This is his first Detective Harry Virdee novel, and it has been described as 'Luther meets The Wire'.
The sky over Bradford is heavy with foreboding. It always is. But this morning it has reason to be - this morning a body has been found. And it's not just any body. Detective Harry Virdee should be at home with his wife. ..... but he's been suspended from work just as the biggest case of the year lands on what would have been his desk. He can't keep himself away.
7.15pm Headingley Library, North Lane
‘Dhand’s Streets of Darkness are in Bradford and they sure are dark... The blood count is high but the novel deserves attention for its sheer inventiveness and unbridled energy.’
Amit will read from his work and will be in conversation with poet James Nash.
Wednesday 15 March
A Yorkshire Tragedy: The Rise and Fall of a Sporting Powerhouse
For some people Old Yorkshire “stood for a pre-80s, prelapsarian idyll; to others an anachronistic, almost vaudevillian version of the class struggle.
The truth is, as always, somewhere in between.” Coming down on the side of the idyll, he argues that something has been missing from British sport. It has lost its heart and soul - its Yorkshireness - which possibly amounts to the same thing.
Anthony Clavane will read from his recently-launched book and will be in conversation with Tony Collins, Professor of Sports History at De Montfort University,
1972: Billy Bremner with Leeds United after winning the FA Cup
A Yorkshire Tragedy is the final part of Anthony Clavane’s triptych that examines belonging, identity and the rise and fall of tightly knit sporting communities through the prism of the author’s own personal experience.
7.15pm Headingley Library,
If you want to know how it feels to be left behind, if you want to know how it feels to be forgotten, if you want to know how it feels to be heartbroken, then read this book’
Friday 10 March
Above Head Height
This book is a a must-have for anyone who has ever played and enjoyed amateur football.
James Brown has been playing football since growing up in Headingley, attending Bennett Road School and playing football in the streets, woods and gardens around Estcourt Avenue.
The sudden death of one of his long-standing team mates made James ponder the unique bond between men who meet each other once a week for years, but don’t know any personal details beyond pitch prowess.
Five-a-Side is sporting Karaoke - a time and place to live out our dreams. This is a book for all of us - school mates, work colleagues, total strangers.
7.30pm New Headingley Club,
St Michael’s Road
James will be in conversation with Dave Simpson from The Guardian.
2.30pm New Headingley Club,
St Michael’s Road
Saturday 25 March
In conversation with:
The Yorkshire Shepherdess Amanda Owen
Amanda Owen (41 years old) has been seen by millions on ITV’s The Dales and in Ben Fogle’s New Lives in the Wild and is currently appearing on ITV1’s Countrywise.
She runs a two thousand acre hill farm in Swaledale in North Yorkshire, fifty miles from the nearest large town. She is a full time shepherdess tending a thousand sheep and has nine children with farmer husband Clive. Her life is dominated by the seasons, feeding,clipping, dipping, herding, rescuing and lambing her flock in one of the most remotely beautiful yet tough spots in the country.
Amanda will read from her book and will be in conversation.
Tea and cakes available
In A Year in the Life of the Yorkshire Shepherdess the reader joins Amanda as she describes the age-old cycles of a farming year and the constant challenges the family faces: from being cut off in winter to tending their flock on some of the country’s highest, wildest moors
Friday 10 February
A Cartoon History of Here
Ian McMillan and Tony Husband
Comedy, cartoonery, poetry and improv!
Created by tonight’s audience with Yorkshire poet, broadcaster and comedian Ian McMillan and Cartoonist of the Year Tony Husband.
‘Bloody Hell, the man’s a genius!’ Yorkshire Post
‘Tony Husband is even funnier than me.’ Griff Rhys Jones
7.00pm HEART Centre, Bennett Road
and Ian McMillan
in partnership with HEART
A fastflowing, rapid-rafting adventure in which two top funny men reflect upon local stories and legends. For audiences, 9 to 109. @IMcMillan
Events coming up during the next week are highlighted in yellow below.