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Karoo Weekend Poetry Workshop

Friday 5th May – Sunday 7th May 2006

Join us at Studio Karoo for a series of ongoing creative weekend workshops on writing, art, music, poetry, theatre and crafts. Set in the stunning Langeberg Mountains only 15 kilometres from the village of Montagu, Studio Karoo is a converted 1909 Cape cottage adjoining Phil and Moira McCumskey's house, which was built in 1899.

Finuala Dowling, best known for her poetry collection I flying, which won her the Ingrid Jonker prize, will host the “Approach to Poetry” weekend workshop. Her second poetry collection, Doo-wop girls of the universe, has just been published. She taught English at Unisa before becoming a freelance writer. Finuala read at the international poetry festival curated by Antjie Krog at Spier earlier this year and will be reading at the 2006 Aldeburgh International Poetry Festival. Her first novel, What Poets Need, was published by Penguin in 2005. Finuala lives in a large green house in Kalk Bay with her daughter, three dogs, mother, no husband and no cat. People sometimes ask about the cat.

The poetry workshop has been inspired by the words of Miroslav Holub: "I prefer to write for people untouched by poetry ... I would like them to read poems in such a matter-of-fact manner as when they are reading the newspaper or go to football matches. I would like people not to regard poetry as something more difficult, more effeminate or more praiseworthy."

This fun weekend is open to only ten participants. It kicks off on Friday evening with a welcoming braai under the Karoo stars and finishes lunchtime Sunday. Your hosts, Moira and Phil, will serve up terrific food and uncork a few bottles of lekker local wine. Accommodation on neighbouring farms is rustic but very comfortable.

How much?
The total cost of the weekend, which includes two nights’ accommodation, the very best food through to Sunday lunch, teas and coffees (all other drinks for your own account) and the workshop itself, is only R1 650 per person. A 50 percent deposit is payable on the date of booking and the balance payable 14 days before the date of the workshop.

To book, phone Phil on (023) 614 2901, or e-mail at kinell@telkomsa.net.

Your hosts
Phil and Moira escaped from Johannesburg in 1996 and spent the next seven years in the Midlands of Natal. In 2003 they discovered Montagu and a lovely smallholding tucked away in the mountains. Moira “knits” copper-wire bags and dabbles in fabric painting and beading. Phil has been a professional actor and director and before leaving Jo'burg ran his own video production company. He now freelances as a writer of video scripts, corporate communications, radio ads and website copy. He also writes travel articles, many of which have been published ... And he's working on a novel. Phil recently co-wrote the script and was the on-camera presenter for an exciting DVD promoting Route 62.

LitNet: 5 April 2006

Send your comments to webvoet@litnet.co.za, and become a part of our interactive opinion page. Or submit your own poetry to Michelle McGrane for consideration.

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