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London’s multi award-winning LGBT+ literary salon takes over the main floor at Heaven on 15th May with a special site-specific event to mark 40 years of the legendary club!

This forms the centrepiece of the Polari Prize Tour, funded by Arts Council England and taking in 20 destinations across the UK and beyond. The tour continues until October, when this year’s Polari Prize winner is announced.

As ever, Polari will be hosted by writer Paul Burston, who’ll be introducing an evening of spoken word, drama, comedy, song and dance to entice and delight you. But hey, what’s the point of holding an event in a totally awesome gay venue without taking advantage, so a fantastic afterparty is also planned. Don’t forget your dancing trousers.

Polari has always been famed for its brilliant guests, but this time our host as pulled out every last stop. Look…
ADELE ANDERSON of Fascinating Aida singing some smokey nightclub numbers.

Legendary author and performer NEIL BARTLETT sharing his memories of Heaven.

Playwright and actor ALEXIS GREGORY performing an extract from his acclaimed play Riot Act.

Poet and theatre-maker PAULA VARJACK recalling her (mis)adventures in clubland.

And for one night only, BARBARA AND THE BROWNSKIRTS performing an original dance/poetry show! YOU WON’T BELIEVE YOUR OWN EYES!
Look! It’s Paula Varjack.
Founded by author Paul Burston, Polari began in 2007 in a bar in Soho. Since 2009, thet’ve been based at London’s Southbank Centre. We also tour regularly, funded by Arts Council England.

​Authors, poets and performers who’ve appeared at Polari include Jake Arnott, Dean Atta, John Boyne, Stella Duffy, Patrick Gale, Philip Hensher, Celia Imrie, Jackie Kay, VG Lee, David McAlmont, Val McDermid, Sarah Waters and many more.
Polari was named Cultural Event of the Year in the Co-op Respect Loved By You Awards 2013.
Founded in 2011, The Polari First Book Prize is awarded annually to a writer whose first book explores the LGBT+ experience, whether in poetry, prose, fiction or non-fiction. Prize is open to authors born or based in the UK and Ireland.
Yorkshire-based writer, Fiona Mozley, was the 2018 prize winner for her Man Booker-shortlisted debut, ‘Elmet’ (John Murray).
This AMAZING event kicks off at 7pm on 15 May. Get your tickets right here, right now.
Paul Burston’s new novel, “The Closer I Get” is out in July 2019. Pre-order it here.

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Rob Harkavy

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