Bad Language with Malachy Tallack

Malachy Tallack

We are delighted to welcome celebrated non-fiction writer Malachay Tallack as he celebrates the launch of his first novel ‘The Valley at the Centre of the World’

Originally from Shetland, Malachy Tallack is the author of two non-fiction titles, ’60 Degrees North’ and ‘The Un-Discovered Islands’. Both fused nature writing, history and memoir; the first was shortlisted for the Saltire First Book Award and the second was named Illustrated Travel Book of the Year at the Edward Stanford Travel Writing Awards 2016. Malachy won a New Writers Award from the Scottish Book Trust in 2014, and the Robert Louis Stevenson Fellowship in 2015. He is a singer-songwriter as well as a writer and journalist, and lives in Glasgow.

‘What I’ve been waiting for: a moving, authentic novel of the Scottish islands in the twenty-first century.’ Amy Liptrot, Bestselling author of THE OUTRUN

‘A desperately beautiful novel. Tallack writes with such tenderness for his characters and quiet awe for the patch of earth he places them upon. Now that I’ve turned the last page, I find myself experiencing a strange kind of loneliness.’ Sara Baume, author of SPILL SIMMER FALTER WITHER and A LINE MADE BY WALKING

Remember, this is a pay what you feel event, so we hope you feel generous…

Daniel Tasker, Ros Ballinger, Lewis James, Lloyd Matthews, Francesca Giacomozzi, Nicky Grant, Touche LaMore, Jenny Turner, Ellaney Hayden, Joe Woodhouse

Wednesday 30 May 2018, 7.30pm at Gullivers (opposite The Castle), Oldham Street, Manchester. Free admission. Venue details here. Join our Facebook event here.


Bad Language with Deanna Rodger


We are delighted to be bringing Deanna Rodger back to Manchester after her spectacular performance at Manchester International Festival.

Deanna is an international writer, performer and facilitator. She co-curates two leading spoken word events: Chill Pill and Come Rhyme With Me and is on the board of Safe Ground. Commissions include: Under The Skin (St Paul’s Cathedral), Now We Are Here (Young Vic), Women Who Spit (BBC IPlayer) and Buckingham Palace (NYT). Accolades include: ELLE UK’s ’30 inspirational women under 30′, The Female Lead’s ’20intheir20s’, Cosmopolitan’s ‘No.1 trailblazing woman’, youngest UK Poetry Slam Champion (2007/8).

She teaches the Writing Poetry for Performance module with Benjamin Zephaniah at Brunel University and is a tutor at School of Communication Arts (‘The most successful ad school in the world’).

David Smith! Ian Peek! Ally Cordon! David Hartley! Rebecca Roy! Lottie W! Munir Zamir! Sophie Shepherd! Anna Percy! and more!

There will be a recommended donation for this show of £3.

Wednesday 25 April 2018, 7.30pm at Gullivers (opposite The Castle), Oldham Street, Manchester. Free admission. Venue details here.

BBC Civilisations: Lost City Stories

Lost City Stories 1024x512 Info

Bad Language presents stories through the wide lens of history. Especially commissioned writers tell tales with long timelines and wild visions from civilisations that have shaped the world today.

The stories will take the theme of building or destroying, and may be told through music or poetry. Experience the oldest tradition of all – passing on tales – with a truly modern twist. Bad Language are twice-winners of UK Best Spoken Word Night and hold monthly events in Manchester’s Northern Quarter.

MICHAEL CONLEY – published by Flarestack Poets and Eyewear, Forward Prize commendee and shortlistee in the Manchester Fiction Prize
LENNI SANDERS – curator of Curious Things and member of poetry cabaret act Dead Lads, and soon to appear in Eyewear’s Best New British and Irish Poets 2018
IAN HUMPHREYS – winner of the Poetry Society’s Hamish Canham Prize and the PENfro Open Poetry Competition, a Complete Works fellow and one of Bloodaxe’s ‘Ten: Poets of the New Generation’.

Join us for this unique spoken word event celebrating the BBC’s Civilisation Festival.

Doors open at 6.30pm. Bar available.

Thursday 8 March 2018, 7pm start, Pendleton Library, Broadwalk, Salford. , Oldham Street, Manchester. £5 admission. Tickets here. Click here to join the Facebook event.

Bad Language February 2018 with Helen Mort

Come read with Bad Language

We are delighted to bring one of our favourite writers, and one of the finest poets in the country, to our event at Gullivers this month.

We’ve been doing events with Helen Mort since pretty much our inception, so it’s always great to have her back on our stage.

Open mic announced soon


Helen Mort is a lecturer in the Manchester Writing School at Manchester Metropolitan University. She has published two poetry collections with Chatto & Windus, ‘Division Street’ (2013) and ‘No Map Could Show Them’ (2016). Her first novel and short story collection are forthcoming and she recently edited ‘One For The Road: An Anthology of Pubs and Poetry’ with Stuart Maconie. In 2017, she won the Mslexia prize with her poem ‘Vanishing Point’.

PLEASE NOTE: There is very limited capacity for this event, so arrive early to avoid disappointment.

Wednesday 28 February 2018, 7.30pm at Gullivers (opposite The Castle), Oldham Street, Manchester. Free admission. Venue details here. Click here to join the Facebook event.

Bad Language at Gullivers: January 2018


Bad Language is back with our first open mic of 2018.

What have we been up to? Joe has been hanging around in fancy hotels and making friends with cats in train stations. Fats has been rediscovering eggs and playing card games in a crown court waiting room.

We’re going to get up to loads in 2018 (including this event with Ralph Dartford) but let’s start with a good old-fashioned word-wrangling stage-storming open mic, shall we? Come and join in the fun on the last day of January at our brilliant home of Gullivers. Entry is totally free.

Oh and also, Fat Roland will be showing off bits of his latest work as he prepares for his new show at The Lowry, Seven Inch.

Open mic announced shortly.

Wednesday 31 January 2018, 7.30pm at Gullivers (opposite The Castle), Oldham Street, Manchester. Free admission. Venue details here. Click here to join the Facebook event.

FRBL Jan 2018

Ralph Dartford: Recovery Songs

Ralph Dartford Recovery Songs poster

Bad Language presents Recovery Songs by Ralph Dartford, directed by Samuel James Humphrey.

Recovery Songs is a brand new spoken word story about addiction, the causes of addiction, and the recovery from its destructive forces.

It’s written and performed by A Firm of Poets founder – and previous Bad Language headliner – Ralph Dartford, from his own true experience of addiction, falling down and getting back up again. An unflinching, sometimes funny confessional that might change your mind about everything you thought you knew about addiction.

‘Recovery Songs is moving, compelling and brave. I was gripped by Ralph Dartford’s performance.’ IMove Arts

‘I remember awkwardly laughing at the beginning of Recovery Songs’, expecting Ralph to jump into comedy through his first piece. Immediately, I realised my mistake. An honest take on his experiences with addiction, it made me sit up and listen. Ralph was captivating and straightforward, stepping from darkness, to hope, to troubled relationships, to love effortlessly. I have no idea how long he performed for, but I couldn’t stop listening.’ Up Yours, Leeds

‘I loved it! Ralph is an excellent and honest storyteller. Go and see him yourself, and make your own judgement.’ Dominic Monaco – Audience member.

Ralph Dartford studied poetry at Birkbeck College, London under the tutelage of Michael Donaghy. His work has appeared in the Guardian, Pulp Faction, Stirring (US), WordLife and London Territories amongst many other publications. His first volume of poetry, ‘Cigarettes, Beer and Love’ received wide acclaim, and his second, ‘Dirty Needle Rain’ will hopefully see the light of day in 2019. Recovery Songs is funded by the Arts Council of England.

Tuesday 27 March 2018, 7.30pm at The Castle, Oldham Street, Manchester. Admission: Pay What You Want. Venue details here. Facebook event here.

Get Lit! It’s Christmas!

Three of Manchester’s greatest live lit nights – Bad Language, First Draft and The Real Story – come together to bring you a night of live spoken word, music, comedy and festive vibes under the fairy lights at The Castle Hotel. Basically, a literary version of a turducken.

We’ll also be raising money for one of the city’s charities pay-what-you-wish style. Full lineup to be announced, in the meantime save the date!

Wednesday 20 December 2017, 7.30pm at The Castle, Oldham Street, Manchester. Free admission. Venue details here. Join the Facebook event here.