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We chatted to the audience during the afternoon of our day long residency at The Beacon in Hastings. The Astronauts were booked for a full length evening dinner poetry show, but in the afternoon they performed tiny extracts for visitors to the house as part of the Coast Currents festival open studio scheme. One particular audience member had been wary of booking the dinner show ticket, she said, because she didn’t know very much about poetry, and didn’t know if she would enjoy a whole evening of it. But the two or three poems each from Sarah, Tom, Amy and Billy performed in a gallery and garden setting  with a few theatrical tricks to point up the meaning of the poems delighted her. This was a way, she said, to welcome her in to poetry’s world, and she felt much more confident in it as a result.

That’s everything that we ever wanted to achieve with our poetry shows, in one in-the-moment, off-the-cuff review.

A beautiful early Autumn day by the sea, with the poets, Phoebe the director, Collette our trainee director and Julia the producer.

Next stop, Keats’ House Museum in London, where the poets will read under the mulberry tree in which his actual nightingale sang …


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