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The fifth Lagos International Poetry Festival, #LIPFest2019, will take place from 30 October to 3 November at Freedom Park, Lagos. Founded in 2015 by the performance poet Efe Paul Azino, author of For Broken Men Who Cross Often, this year’s festival, themed “A Wild Beautiful Thing,” will feature five days of performances, panels, book launches, readings, exhibitions, film screenings, and workshops. The festival has also announced an exchange programme with two poetry festivals: Poetry Africa in Durban and Southbank Centre’s Poetry International in London.

Among the 2019 guests are Booker Prize winner and Brunel International African Poetry Prize founder Bernardine Evaristo, Kaveh Akbar, the musicians Brymo and Lady Donli, Brittle Paper Award for Poetry winners JK Anowe and Itiola Jones, 20.35 Africa editor Ebenezer Agu, the performance poets Wana Udobang and Tobi Abiodun, Farafina Books editor Enajite Efemuaye, Brittle Paper deputy editor Otosirieze Obi-Young, the memoirist Bassey Ikpi, and the poets Momtaza Mehri, Logan February, and TJ Dema, among others.

Here is a note from the festival website:

LIPFest2019 is a celebration of human resilience and the joy of our survivings. The festival enters its fifth year at a time of unprecedented activity, efforts to salvage something precious from the wreckages of humanity.

This proliferation of initiatives, in public, private and community spaces, has been attended by a wave of cultural production, driven in large part by marginalized thinkers and voices. And so this year, we draw an intergenerational assortment of dreamers, who by insisting the imagination be central to our lives, inspire a generation to rise up to the challenges of its time.

We invoke language, in all its transcendence and euphoria, to reassert that we are still here, in the stories of our forebears, in the unrelenting songs of our present moment, dreaming our brokenness and beauty into time and beyond.

LIPFest2019 brings over fifty writers, poets and thinkers from over ten countries, and offers a multi-layered experience with something for everyone, from readings and performances, to conversations, workshops, book launches, film screenings, music, and exhibitions.

We welcome visitors from across Nigeria, Africa and the world to our annual Lagos party, a rolling out of the red carpet in celebration of our 5th edition, of the many poets, writers, artists, audiences, sponsors and partners, some returning this year, others joining us for the first time, and of the wild beautiful thing which binds us together.

The 2017 festival was themed “Bridges From Walls,” while the 2018 edition was themed “Wide Awake.”

The festival can be followed on Twitter at @LagosPoetryFest, on Instagram at @lagospoetryfest, and on Facebook at “Lagos International Poetry Festival.”

Interested people can register online on the festival Website: www.lagospoetryfestival.com.

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About Otosirieze Obi-Young

View all posts by Otosirieze Obi-Young
Otosirieze Obi-Young is a writer, journalist, & Deputy Editor of Brittle Paper. The recipient of the inaugural The Future Awards Prize for Literature in 2019, he sits on the judging panels of The Miles Morland Writing Scholarships and of The Gerald Kraak Prize. He is Nonfiction Editor at 14, Nigeria’s first queer art collective, which has published volumes including We Are Flowers (2017) and The Inward Gaze (2018). He is Curator at The Art Naija Series, a sequence of e-anthologies of writing and visual art focusing on different aspects of Nigerianness, including Enter Naija: The Book of Places (2016), which explores cities, and Work Naija: The Book of Vocations (2017), which explores professions. His work in queer equality advocacy in literature has been profiled in Literary Hub. His fiction has appeared in The Threepenny Review and Transition. He has completed a collection of short stories, You Sing of a Longing, is working on a novel, and is represented by David Godwin Associates literary agency. He has an M.A. in African Studies and a combined honours B.A. in History & International Studies/English & Literary Studies, both from the University of Nigeria, Nsukka. He taught English in a private Nigerian university. Find him at otosirieze.com, where he accepts writing and editing offers, or on Instagram or Twitter: @otosirieze. When bored, he Googles Rihanna.

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