Feature Events

Thursday 28

The Dirty Word

Feat. DA Carter’s Musical Restaurant from 7-8pm

8pm–late, Totem Theatre
Bring your notepads, bring your pens! Come down to the Totem Theatre and share your story at The Dirty Word, Alice Springs’ premiere spoken word/poetry open mic night. Hosted by Andrew Galan from Canberra’s infamous BAD!SLAM!NO!BISCUIT! This is the place to be heard, be inspired and share truths. Featuring an interactive poetry experience with DA Carter, Cooking With Music.
Cost: Entry by donation

Friday 29

Poetry @ Page

7:30am – 9:00AM, Page 27 Cafe
Who doesn’t want a bit of poetry with their morning caffeine fix? Get up nice and early and join our poets for an intimate poetry experience.

Live music @ Totem

5–6pm, Totem Theatre courtyard
Wind down after work in the Totem courtyard with a drink and some chilled out tunes by local musicians.
Cost: FREE

Dry River Readings

6–8pm, Totem Theatre
Get up close with some of the finest faces in spoken word poetry. You’re in for a treat with US poetry sensation Desiree Dallagiacomo, Lorin Elizabeth, Sanya Yorth, Celestine Delvene Rowe, Eleanor Jackson, Matthew Heffernan, Fred Vant Sand, and more. Feat. book launch of Andrew Galan’s poetry collection, For All The Veronicas (The Dog Who Staid).
Cost: $10

Rooftop Hip-Hop

8.30–LATE, Epilogue Rooftop
Darwin soul/hip-hop duo Sietta are headlining an awesome night of hip-hop and beats that’s sure to knock you off your feet on the Epilogue Rooftop. Supported by Dan The Underdog, Darcy Davis, DA Carter, Karnage N Darknis and Big Money Gino from Hobart. Finishing the night will be a set from DJ Mangohig
Cost: $15

Saturday 30

Poetry Posters (a Guided Tour)

9–10am, Todd Mall
We’re spreading words through the Todd Mall! Come on a guided tour of the Mall which follows the trail of our poetry posters. Supported by the Alice Springs Town Council – don’t forget to rug up!
Cost: FREE

Haiku Death Match

10am–12pm, 8CCC Radio Carpark
Bring your haiku – prepare for battle. Using original 5-7-5 haiku structure, haikusters are taking it to the carpark. That’s right. Old school carpark battle. Broadcast live on 8CCC radio, sign ups at 9:30 for a 10am haiku throwdown. The NT tradition continues, hosted by Fred Vant Sand.
Cost: Entry by donation

Pop-Up Poetry

12–2pm, The Goods
All about the open mic – come down to The Goods for some Saturday early afternoon wordplay. Join local and visiting poets telling tales on the footpath. Hosted by Ben McIntyre.
Cost: FREE

Mixtape Memoirs (by the Emerging Writers’ Festival)

5:30–6:30pm, Totem Theatre
The Emerging Writers’ Festival’s Mixtape Memoirs will see a convergence of music and poetry themed around revolution and rebellion. You won’t get this playlist off the radio – it’s a handcrafted gift from us to you. Featuring storytelling magic from Desiree Dallagiacomo, Lawrence Gino, Adrian MacNamara, Anupama Pilbrow, Matthew Heffernan, Eleanor Jackson, Laurie May & Victoria Alondra. Hosted by DA Carter.
Cost: $10

The Poetry Games (or Whose Poem Is It Anyway?)

7.30–9pm, Totem Theatre
That’s definitely not plagiarism. Two teams of poets (with the help of the audience) battle it out with improvised poetry challenges. From hilarious haiku to dodgy bush poetry – don’t miss out on your chance to be part of the action.
Cost: $10

Boulevard of Broken Hearts (late night reading)

9–11pm, Totem Theatre
Let’s finish the night with a steaming cup of mulled cider and a tale of broken heartedness. Whether a person, experience or oppressive government regime, we want to hear from you. We got your back. With poetry from Lia Tilson, Sanya Yorth, DA Carter, Adrian MacNamara, Lorin Elizabeth, Andrew Galan and you!
Cost: Entry by donation

Sunday 31

Mark Your Territory Poster and Zine Fair

3–7pm, Watch This Space
Open for submission not submission. Mark Your Territory poster & zine fair will see you – Alice Springs voice your issues, concerns, hopes and aspirations in the form of a political poster or zine in the lead up to the Territory election. Come along and see what’s on offer. Send your info and submission into to Betty at
Cost: Entry by donation

Poetry High Tea (supported by NT Writers’ Centre)

5–7pm, Watch This Space
Don your aprons and frocks and join us for an audacious high-tea and performance. Join these brilliant poets for an ode to love, food, flavours and family, and learn a little bit more about where they came from and how food has defined who they are today. Featuring the superb stylings of Leni Shilton, Glen Morrison, Meg Mooney, Penny Drysdale, Maureen O’Keefe, DA Carter, Laurie May & Lorin Elizabeth.
Cost: $10

The Afterparty

7pm–late, Watch This Space
Time to let loose. Food, booze and live tunes. It’s Picnic Day tomorrow, let’s celebrate down by the railroad tracks. We’re keeping the bands a secret for now…
Cost: $10


Eleanor Jackson

Opening Thu 28 5-6pm; showing Fri 29, 12-5pm; sat 30, 12-2pm; Sun 31, 3-5pm, Watch This Space
Poetry is a tangible, shared experience with Eleanor Jackson’s exhibitions. Together, the works take as their departure point the idea that intimacy is somehow started by a contribution, a self-disclosure, a moment or more of propinquity (physical closeness) and the intent to somehow connect.

Bedroom Eyes Intimate Interactive Installation

Fri 29, 5–7PM, Sat & Sun 12–2pm @ Undisclosed CBD Location
Bedroom Eyes is a collaborative installation produced by bedroom poet Lia Tilson (Grouse Party) and Melbourne artist Sabina McKenna. Exploring feminist bedroom culture, through poetry, video, sound, and sculpture; the three dimensional works create a dreamscape that examines budding identities, intimacy, depression, sexuality and self-expression. Bedroom Eyes invites you to explore (and participate) in a three dimensional dreamscape: a reality alive solely in our heads. Keep an eye on social media for location announcement.

Poetry Confessional

Thu 28–Fri 29, 8am–12pm, The Goods
Cheat on a 6th grad math test? Perhaps you served soup your cat licked to dinner guests? Whatever you did, confess your sins to our in house poet and have it turned into a work of art! If you’re not too shy take a sneaky pic and upload it for the world to see on Instagram using the hashtag #confessionalpoetry. Poets in house from 8am – 12pm Thursday and Friday of the festival.

The Divination Agency

Sat 30, 4–5:30pm, Totem Theatre, Sun 31, 7–8:30pm, Watch This Space
Armed with a mystical dictionary, brushes, a typewriter and liters of ink, Ms Divine and Miss Print present, “The Divination Agency”. Explore your present or future through images and the typed word, as narrative therapy meets the occult whilst irreverently pawing at the English language. Bonus bad love poems!

Skin of the Text

By Kim Zeneth

Sat 30, 6:30–7:30pm, Totem Theatre
Skin of the Text is a live installation of poetry written on the body. Actors bodies are arranged into sculptures with arms and legs in particular formations, so that audiences can read the poetry inscribed. Thematically linked poetic phrases written across arms and legs join up to form lines of poetry. Audiences can walk around the Skin of the Text installation to read two sequences of poetry from different angles. Skin of the text was first created by Kim Zeneth for the Adelaide Fringe festival. Subsequent themed installations have been presented for Mental Health Week and Disability Awareness Week in Adelaide South Australia. Skin of the Text has not been presented in the NT before. Red Dirt Festival’s installation explores themes of body and landscape, rawness and belonging.

ASTC Poetry Posters

Throughout the Fest @ Todd Mall
We’re spreading words through the Todd Mall! Throughout the Festival you’ll notice poetry plastered in shop windows around Alice Springs from our festival poets. Enjoy the view and don’t forget to take a photo!

Choose Your Own Poetry Adventure

Throughout the Fest @ Totem Theatre
With over 256 unique combinations, this poetry installation will keep you entertained for hours. Featuring poetry lovingly crafted by Victoria Alondra.

Poetry in Suspense

throughout the Fest @ Page 27
We’d hate to keep you waiting… please take a poem from our display at Page 27.

Poetry On The Move!


Fri 29, 1–2pm, Todd Mall
Poetry has the power to move: move us into action and move us to tears.
SO REAL Alice Springs art throbs are hitting the street with a blank page to weave the ultimate epic prose-on-the-road composition with you, Alice! We want to be transported by your passion, your insight, your depth, your intellect and your emotions! Your words will literally be the soul fuel that keeps us trucking on!


Kickin’ Verses

with Dan the Underdog

Sat 30, 1–3pm, Totem Theatre
“Kickin Verses” is a 2-hour Youth Hip-Hop workshop run by Dan the Underdog. Participants will write and record a professional quality Hip Hop song and learn the process behind making a track. Dan the Underdog is a practicing MC/Producer with over 10 years in the industry.
Cost: $10

Poetry as Resistance

with Lorin Elizabeth & Victoria Alondra

Sat 30, 1–3pm, The Diplomat Hotel
Poetry through history has been used as a tool to fight oppression through the arts and provided a platform for people to be heard and express themselves. Spend 2 hrs with Victoria Alondra & Lorin Elizabeth as they guide you towards meaningful poetic creation.
Cost: $5

Putting It Out There

with Kaye Hall

Sat 30, 2–4pm, Red Hot Arts
Want to get your work out there? Kaye Hall will show you the way with her 2hr workshop showing you the ropes of writer promotion. From Facebook to bios, don’t miss out on this opportunity to learn from an expert.
Cost: $10

Writing & Performing

with Desiree Dallagiacomo

Sat 30, 3–5pm, Totem Theatre
A workshop for all of Alice! All the way from the US, join award winning poet Desiree Dallagiacomo on a journey of poetic expression. This workshop will develop and encourage your love and talent for the written and spoken word as a platform for activism.
Cost: $5

School Workshops

Throughout the week our poets will be teaching in schools across Alice Springs.