Wordsmiths of courageous poetry live at Moot
If you have visited Greenbelt or the Edinburgh Festivals in the last two years, you will have noticed the stunning rise of this amazing duo, who perform a unique blend of poetry, rap and jazz. Together, these two school friends, who are stunning audiences across the UK, helped to raise at least £2,378 for the Al Ahli Hospital in Gaza. As October is Breast Cancer awareness month, the Amos Trust is raising funds for the hospital’s work around breast cancer, which is the highest cause of death for Palestinian women due to lack of/restrictions on screening and treatment.
The set by Harry and Chris is simple, with the chaps recounting their friendship through songs and musical raps. When there is so much negativity in the world and in popular culture, these two lift the spirits through songs about the love lives of pandas, turning vegetarian, and time travel, amongst others.
Commenting on the fundraiser, Chris Read, Jazz Supremo said:
“It was so fun to play the Amos fundraiser last week. We’re taking a break between Edinburgh and our upcoming tour but wanted to play this one because it’s such a good cause. Also, our landlord Naz organised it and said we had to do it in return for cheap rent. Because we’re in a little break the songs felt nice and fresh, and it was a great crowd as well. And what a venue!”
During the evening of first-rate, gifted wordsmanship, we got to see the stunning poetry of Zena Kazeme, a Persian-Iraqi-born poet who draws on her experiences as a former refugee. Her poetry creates imagery that explores themes of exile, home, war and heritage. Her writing was first recognised at the age of 11 as a result of winning a school competition. Since then, she has performed at a few events, including Artists in Solidarity with Refugees, at the Poetry Cafe and Greenbelt 2017.
In front of the packed church, she stunned everyone with a poem, about the Grenfell Tower which she can see from her home in a nearby tower block. She recited her verses about watching the fire and left the gathering hanging on her every word.
At the beginning of the night, the show started with the comedian Orla Newark, who gave an eight-voice rendition of a self-help vegetable addiction group, Avocados Anonymous, which led to hilarious consequences. This was her very first outing before a live audience, and her debut enraptured those present.
The night ended with bass-thumping beats of guest DJs, including LUMA, a young female DJ from south-east London, who plays a smorgasbord of genres and world music, which is influenced by London and her Arabic heritage. LUMA delivered a unique mix of house, disco and UK funk alongside shamstep, bhangra and dancehall. It will explain why she also is a regular on the decks at Greenbelt every year, delivering her creativity to packed crowds.
Discussing the success of the evening, Tim Dendy, a Warden for Moot and the church said:
“For us at Moot, it was an opportunity to support a very good cause and be involved in a charity whose values and objects we felt we could get behind. Also, it brought a lot of people into the building whom may not have visited before and so introduced them to our cafe (Host) and the Moot community.
“Our physical location puts us in the heart of the City and the financial sector, (and all that goes with the City in terms of power and influence), and we are keenly aware of how important it is to help bring attention to important causes that are perhaps often overlooked or neglected. In the future, we look forward to again supporting Amos Trust as well as other organisations whom are standing beside those in need.”
To find out more about The Harry and Chris Show on tour, you can grab tickets by accessing their website. Nearby show locations include Walton-on-Thames, Cambridge and the Leicester Square Theatre in December. More information on the Moot new-monastic community and its stunning café Host in online.
Photo Credits: Tim Dendy of Moot.