WORDSMITH: Robin 'Archie' Archbold performs at the Poet's Breakfast.
WORDSMITH: Robin 'Archie' Archbold performs at the Poet's Breakfast. Tessa Mapstone

Why Coast poet is bringing storytelling to the stage

GONE are the days when histories, myth and stories were told only through the voice, but Sunshine Coast wordsmith Robin 'Archie' Archbold is bringing spoken word performance back into the spotlight.

A regular at Woodford Folk Festival, Mr Archbold will be resurrecting a monthly performance poetry event in Palmwoods early in 2017.

"Every culture has its storytellers and they're experts in what they do," he said

"There's a whole bunch of dynamics in what the storyteller or poet brings that you will never ever get off the page.

"Plus in a live situation you have the interaction between the audience and performer; it creates an energy field that you're never going to get from a book.

"When you get hundreds of people sitting with a performer who knows what they're doing, suddenly there's an emotional magic that gets created."

Mr Archbold performed at Woodfordia yesterday as part of the Poet's Breakfast where anyone could get up in front of the crowd and perform their own, or another's, work.

He said the events used to be bush poetry-heavy, but they had evolved to include a range of styles.

Yesterday's readings including emotionally-charged personal stories, political messages, historical reflections, and explorations of contemporary issues, as well as some original bush compositions and Henry Lawson works.

It was after decades in the real estate business in Nimbin that Mr Archbold got the push he needed to start writing and performing his contemporary poems, and going on to win a swag of awards.

Now living in Mapleton, and focusing on word-craft - both written and spoken - he said the Sunshine Coast Spoken Word events he ran in the past had opened doors for people to be part of something new.

"It creates a community of writers and poets that didn't exist before," he said.

"I started off with the big names (like Irish Joe Lynch and Harry Donnelly) and ended up with 18-20 readers inspired to come up off the floor.

"It gives people a voice to be able to tell their stories like they've never been able to before."

Find out more on the Facebook page in the new year.


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