Official website of award-winning LGBTQ+ literary salon 

polari

Polari Paul
Polari Paul

Image by Justin David

Celia Imrie & Fidelis Morgan
Celia Imrie & Fidelis Morgan

Polari at Southbank

Jake Arnott
Jake Arnott

Polari at Southbank

Polari Paul
Polari Paul

Image by Justin David

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LATEST NEWS

In March 2020, Polari was awarded a grant from Arts Council England’s Grants for the Arts, to fund a major 22 date tour. 

The Polari Prize Tenth Anniversary Tour showcases writers long and shortlisted for the 2020

Polari Prize awards for emerging and established LGBTQ+ literary talent, as well as winners from the Prize’s ten year history, dating back to 2011. 

The tour kicked off at Huddersfield Literature Festival and will end in October 2021with a special event at London’s Southbank Centre, when this year’s Prize winners will be announced as part of the London Literature Festival. 

The tour will also include events in Birmingham, Bradford, Canterbury, Edinburgh, Newcastle, York and at London’s legendary nightclub Heaven and gay sauna Sweatbox Soho.

NOTE - Due to Covid-19 many events are taking place online. See Coming Up for details.

BACKGROUND

Founded by author Paul Burston, Polari began in 2007 in a bar in Soho. Since 2009, we’ve been based at London’s Southbank Centre. We also tour regularly, funded by Arts Council England.

There’s a brief history of Polari on our YouTube channel HERE 

There’s a brief history of Polari on tour HERE

For a taste of recent events, you can listen to the Polari podcast HERE

Writers and performers who’ve appeared at Polari include Adele Anderson, Amrou Al-Kadhi, Penny Arcade, Jake Arnott, Neil Bartlett, Dustin Lance Black, John Boyne, Russell T Davies, Maureen Duffy, Stella Duffy, Cerys Evans, Bernardine Evaristo, Patrick Gale, Salena Godden, Niven Govinden, Garth Greenwell, Alexis Gregory, Saleem Haddad, Mari Hannah, Philip Hensher, Celia Imrie, Juliet Jacques, Keith Jarrett, Jackie Kay, VG Lee, Kirsty Logan, David McAlmont, John McCullough, Val McDermid, Karen McLeod, Andrew McMillan, Paul McVeigh, Fiona Mozley, Musa Okwonga, Diriye Osman, Juno Roche, PJ Samuels, Ali Smith, Joelle Taylor, Tracey Thorn, Paula Varjack and Sarah Waters.

Polari was named Cultural Event of the Year in the Co-op Respect Loved By You Awards 2013.

“Always fun, always thought-provoking – a guaranteed great night out” – Sarah Waters

“Lively, funny and inspiring – a gay-themed salon of interest to anyone remotely interested in literature, whatever their sexual bent” – Patrick Gale

ArtsCouncilLogo.jpg
 

Coming up

 

Wed July 28 - Polari In Heaven 7pm doors for 7.30pm. £12 (+ booking fee)

With Kate Davies, Keith Jarrett, Paul Mendez, Golnoosh Nour, Helen Sheals and Emma Dears.

Thur Aug 5 - Polari at Sangam Festival  7pm FREE

 

With Nikita Gill, Golnoosh Nour and Mohsin Zaidi. 

Tue Sep 7 - Creative Writing Course 7pm. £60 for six weeks

With award-winning author and writing coach Karen McLeod and Polari founder Paul Burston.

Thur Sep 16 - Polari at G-A-Y Manchester 7pm doors for 7.30pm. £8

With Emma Goswell, Okechukwu Nzelu, Joelle Taylor and more TBA.

Fri Sep 24 - Polari at The RVT  6pm doors for 7pm

Full lineup TBA

Thur Sep 30 - Polari at Pride in the Ironworks, Brighton 7pm doors for 8pm

 

With Cerys Evans, David Fennell, Robert Hamberger, John McCullough, Karen McLeod and Allie Rogers.

Polari Paul
Polari Paul

Photography and artwork by Justin David

Nikita_edited
Nikita_edited

Nikita Gill

IMG_0155_edited
IMG_0155_edited

Okechukwu Nzelu by Martin Glackin

Polari Paul
Polari Paul

Photography and artwork by Justin David

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Karen McLeod
Paul Burston
PRAISE FOR POLARI

"The most exciting literary movement in London... crackling with energy, ideas, excitement"

HUFFINGTON POST

 
 

For enquiries, please contact paulburston@btinternet.com

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