Commission ‘Altered Nature’ with David Wheatley, Mary Jean Chan, Isaiah Hull, Jane Burn and music from the Chuva Guitar Duo: 21 March 2020


A free poetry and music event at the Whitworth Art Gallery on 21 March 2020 (2.30-4.00).

This is our annual commission event; poets David Wheatley, Mary Jean Chan, Isaiah Hull and Jane Burn have been invited to participate in a poetry commission ‘Altered Nature’.

As 21st March is #WorldPoetryDay Manchester City of Literature will be live streaming some of our readings and also holding a short tree planting ceremony immediately after the event which you are all invited to, it will be held just outside in Whitworth Park to celebrate setting down roots for poetry in Manchester. There will also be readings from poets John McAuliffe and Aisha Mirza.

Everyone welcome. All areas of the Gallery are accessible and there are several parking bays on Denmark Road for disabled visitors.

David Wheatley

David Wheatley was born in Dublin in 1970 and educated at Trinity College, Dublin. He has published four collections of poetry with Gallery Press and, more recently, The President of Planet Earth with Carcanet. He has also edited the poetry of Samuel Beckett for Faber and Faber, and written an academic study, Contemporary British Poetry (Palgrave, 2015). He has reviewed widely for the TLS, Guardian, LRB and other journals, and lives with his family in rural Aberdeenshire.

Mary Jean Chan

Mary Jean Chan is a London-based poet from Hong Kong. She is an editor of Oxford Poetry and a Lecturer in Creative Writing (Poetry) at Oxford Brookes University. She came Second in the 2017 National Poetry Competition, and has been shortlisted for the Forward Prize for Best Single Poem twice. She received an Eric Gregory Award in 2019, and won the 2018 Poetry Society Geoffrey Dearmer Prize for her collection’s title poem. Flèche (Faber & Faber, 2019). Her collection Flèche won the Costa Poetry Prize 2019.

Isaiah Hull

Isaiah Hull is a noir writer from Old Trafford, exploring and challenging the extremities of self with image, word and soul whether on page or stage.


Jane Burn

Jane Burn lives with her family for eight months of the year in a self-sustained wooden cottage on the Northumberland border which they fully restored using almost wholly reclaimed or recycled materials. Her love of nature is reflected in her poems which have been published in many magazines including Poethead, The Rialto, Iota Poetry, Under the Radar, Crannog, Strix and Butcher’s Dog to name a few. Her work has appeared in anthologies from The Emma Press, Valley Press, Seren, Fairacre Press and Beautiful Dragons. Her poems have been placed, shortlisted and longlisted in thirty-eight national and international poetry competitions and have been nominated for the Forward and Pushcart Prize.

The Chuva Guitar Duo

The Chuva Guitar Duo was founded in 2018 by Manchester-based guitarists Rafael Onyett and Borna Kuca. The duo studied at the Royal Northern College of Music under the tutelage of the internationally renowned classical guitarist Craig Ogden. Since commencing their studies at the college, the duo have performed across the UK, at venues including the Bury Parish Church, Instituto Cervantes and the Royal Northern College of Music.

Duo Chuva is also part of a larger, established collective that collaborate with professional dancers – the Chuva Collective. The collective offers exciting performances of live music and dance, adding a unique twist to some of the more celebrated works of classical and Latin music.

Video Recording –





About Janet Rogerson

Janet Rogerson
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