A Toast to the People: Hollie McNish and Wana Udobang

Join Hollie McNish and Wana Udobang for an electric night of performance poetry and spoken word in the International Festival’s Old College Quad venue!

A Toast to the People: Hollie McNish and Wana Udobang

About A Toast to the People: Hollie McNish and Wana Udobang

Expect a celebration of contemporary storytelling at its finest.

Not easily categorised, Glasgow-based Hollie McNish is a writer who loves writing. She has released two spoken word albums and a collection titled Plum since winning the UK Poetry Slam in 2009, and her new book Slug…and other things I’ve been told to hate was released in May of this year. McNish’s new poems often go viral, reaching millions on YouTube and she has also won the 2016 Ted Hughes Award for her poetic memoir Nobody Told Me.

She performs along with Wana Udobang for this A Toast to the People event. Udobang is a storyteller and artist working at the intersection of writing, poetry, performance and film. She has released three studio albums as a poet and for her work in journalism has been awarded numerous fellowships, including the International Women’s Media Foundation Fellowship. Udobang has spent the last five years developing and curating Culture Diaries, an archival project and Pan-African artist network that uses multi-platform storytelling to document African artists. She is a 2021 University of IOWA International writing residency fellow.

A Toast to the People brings together two spoken word artists, each performing their own set of performance poetry that includes a specially commissioned piece inspired by Gil Scott-Heron and Brian Jackson’s ‘A Toast to the People’. Following their sets, the two artists take part in an exclusive discussion about their work and the pervading issues and themes of today.

In partnership with Edinburgh International Book Festival


Venue: Old College Quad - University of Edinburgh, South Bridge, Edinburgh, EH8 9YL

Our Old College Quad outdoor venue is home to our afternoon chamber music series, a session of traditional Scottish music, five nights of inspirational spoken word and unmissable late night cabaret.

Our outdoor venues are covered, but you should come dressed appropriately for the weather, including suitable footwear for walking across grass.

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