Tuesday, 9 September 2014

A double-bill of poetic mischief

The Edinburgh Fringe has passed, and already I'm remembering it with a rosy glow. I seem to have forgotten the hours spent standing in the rain, attempting to find new and interesting ways to say "please take my flyer"; instead, I seem to recall it as a whirl of excitement and shows and smiling audiences. Even the occasion when we got locked out of our venue and I ended up shepherding the audience into a small shed and performing in the pouring rain has become, in my memory, a fun adventure rather than a soggy headache:

But however selective my memory may be, one definite positive thing to come out of my first proper run at the Fringe has been the reviews. It's usually not easy to get reviewed as a spoken word artist, but the Fringe is awash with reviewers and I managed to somehow tempt a few into my venue, which means that now I can use the following words whenever I want to plug the show:


***** "Genuine and passionate, a must-see...makes this serious subject matter not just light-hearted but bordering on hilarious." - edfringereview.com
**** "Exciting, enraging and inspiring...he changed the way I perceive activists." - ThreeWeeks
**** "Infinitely better than Deep Throat Live" - theatrereviews.co.uk

exciting, enraging and inspiring tales of his life as an activist. Am I praising him because its my moral duty to? Partly, but thats because Chivers was convincing enough to make it my moral duty; he changed the way I perceive activists. - See more at: http://www.threeweeks.co.uk/article/ed2014-spoken-word-review-arrest-that-poet-pbhs-free-fringe-2014/#sthash.MqEYqJsk.dpuf
exciting, enraging and inspiring tales of his life as an activist. Am I praising him because its my moral duty to? Partly, but thats because Chivers was convincing enough to make it my moral duty; he changed the way I perceive activists. - See more at: http://www.threeweeks.co.uk/article/ed2014-spoken-word-review-arrest-that-poet-pbhs-free-fringe-2014/#sthash.MqEYqJsk.dpuf
A top five Edinburgh Fringe spoken word pick for both WOW247 and Fringe Review

Shortlisted for the Edinburgh Fringe Sustainable Practice Award and the Amnesty Freedom of Expression Award


For which I am very grateful. I'm particularly grateful to all the amazing volunteers and performers on the Free Fringe, without whom I would not have been able to perform at all (to put on a show in one of the paid Fringe venues, you have to stump up thousands of pounds in advance; the Free Fringe, by contrast uses free venues and asks performers for just a small donation to cover costs). Huge thanks also to everyone who came to see the show, wrote about it, talked about it, and persuaded others to come along. Without you I would be, well, bellowing rhyming couplets at an empty room. More than usual.

So what next? Well, a Very Exciting Thing: I'm going to be performing the show as a double-bill with the wonderful whirlwind of lyrical energy that is Pete The Temp. He's touring his excellent show "Pete The Temp vs. Climate Change", and we'll be performing both our shows back-to-back (not literally) at the Free Word Centre in London on Friday November 21st. If that sounds like the sort of thing you'd like then you can book tickets here.

Hope you're all well, and maybe see you soon...

Friday, 8 August 2014

My first mini-review at the Fringe!

Ooh look - WOW247 have got me as one of their "5 spoken word shows to catch at the Fringe".

"Danny Chivers may appear to be a foppish young man from Bristol – partly because he is. But as well as this, he is also a politically active slam poet who has been chained to a construction company’s staircase and sued for five million pounds. Danny talks about his scrapes with the ‘powers that be’ (and Richard Madeley) over the issues of climate change and environmental causes in a show that’s both funny and thought-provoking."

Particularly excited to be described as "foppish" for the first time in my life. Makes me want to rush out and buy a silk handkerchief and top hat forthwith.

Thursday, 24 July 2014

I've been shortlisted for an award!

Ooooh - I've just learned that my show, "Arrest That Poet!", has been shortlisted for the Edinburgh Fringe Sustainable Practice Award. This award, supported by the Centre for Sustainable Practice in the Arts and Creative Carbon Scotland, aims to highlight and celebrate artists who are engaging with the topic of climate change in creative and innovative ways.
Here's the full press release about my show. If you're in Edinburgh this year between the 2nd and 13th of August, it would be brilliant to see you there! It would be especially nice to get a good crowd on the 13th, when the award's "assessors" will be coming to watch the show... 
At last, a performer with conviction(s)
Have you ever climbed up a power station, D-locked yourself to a construction company’s staircase or been sued for £5 million? Until recently, slam poet Danny Chivers certainly hadn’t. So how did a quiet boy from Bristol end up being spied on by undercover cops, battling criminal charges and trying not to thump Richard Madeley, all in the name of a safer planet?

Obviously, the only sensible way to stand up to oppressive police tactics is to turn them into an Edinburgh Fringe show. So now storytelling meets poetry in this darkly funny true tale of rhyming and rebellion, featuring insider stories from anti-fracking protests, outrageous mass arrests and a close encounter with notorious police spy Mark Kennedy.
“Feisty, thought-provoking and politically rounded ... a seriously funny rising star” (New Internationalist Magazine).
Danny Chivers has been performing stand-up poetry since 2006. He’s an Oxford Hammer & Tongue Slam Champion, and was a semi-finalist in the BBC Radio 4 National Poetry Slam. In his first full-length stage show, Danny weaves together lively, humorous poetry with real-life tales of the strange events surrounding his four arrests at environmental and social justice protests.
"I can think of few people who can talk so earnestly about activism whilst keeping an audience in stitches." - Leo Wan, Flipping the Bird theatre company
Danny’s show, “Arrest That Poet!” is part of the PBH FreeFringe. 

Twitter: @chiversdanny

ARREST THAT POET! by Danny Chivers
Venue: The Stafford Centre, 103 Broughton St
Date: 2nd  – 13th August (not 7th)
Time: 6.15pm (60 mins)
Entry: free, unticketed (PBH Free Fringe)
"Half master of witty banter, half eerily reasonable prophet of environmental armageddon" - Radio Foreplay

Thursday, 20 February 2014

I'm doing a two-week run at the Edinburgh Fringe

...which is quite exciting. Here's the blurb for my show, which is called "Arrest That Poet!":

"Danny Chivers is a slam poet and environmental activist. His attempts to battle injustice using dodgy rhymes and D-locks have seen him arrested four times, spied on by undercover cops and sued for £5 million. His new show blends storytelling, poetry and politics into a darkly funny true tale of rhyming and rebellion."

It's a mixture of storytelling, poetry, and daft jokes, and includes this poem that I first wrote and performed whilst occupying a power station chimney:

I'm going to be part of the Free Fringe in Edinburgh, which is brilliant - there's no door fee, you just put some money in the bucket as you leave, based on how much you can afford and what you thought of the show.

As you can see in the list to the right of the screen, I've also got warm-up performances of the show lined up in Cambridge, Manchester, Norwich and Newport (Shropshire), and should be adding London and Oxford to that list soon.

Hope to see you, all you fine fine people...

Wednesday, 24 July 2013

An interactive graphic showing why we don't need fossil fuels

OK everyone, this is it! I've been working on this for a long time with the UK Tar Sands Network, and now it's finally here...

Don't let anyone tell you we need fossil fuels to power the world. We don't.

Today we are launching a brand new website that shows another energy future is possible: http://twoenergyfutures.org . Please take some time to explore this infographic, based on the latest research, which demonstrates we don't need to stay on the path to climate disaster. We can power the world's growing population and give everyone a good quality of life, all with renewables.

I've written a blog that explains a bit more about the website and the research behind it, which you can find at the Greenpeace Energy Desk (as well as a few other places).

A cleaner fairer future is possible - let's make it happen!

Monday, 22 July 2013

Exciting new thing coming soon

I've just been going through the numbers from the brand new shiny Zero Carbon Britain report from the Centre for Alternative Technology. I'm using it (along with various other bits of research) to work out whether it's possible to give everyone on the planet enough energy for a good quality of life without fossil fuels, nuclear power, large-scale agrofuels, destructive mega-dams or scary geoengineering. Guess what? It's totally possible, if we use energy more sensibly and share it more fairly.

This is all part of a project I'm working on with the UK Tar Sands Network that will be launching later this week, it's going to be exciting, watch this space...!

Friday, 5 April 2013

Sorry, should have mentioned here earlier...

...that we won! EDF are no longer suing us for £5 million. Thanks so much to everyone who supported this part of the campaign.

But it isn't over. Although we've beaten EDF's civil claim, the criminal charges still stand and so I'm going to be sentenced on June 6th, along with my fellow 20 power station invaders. More news on all of this to follow soon...