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Openings: A Launch Event for University of York Writer-in-Residence, Vahni Capildeo – with special guest Ian Duhig

Friday 22 May 2020, 7.30PM

Writers at York and the department of English and Related Literature are delighted to announce this inaugural event for the University of York’s new Writer in Residence, Vahni Capildeo. In the first event for this three-year residency, Vahni will be joined by Leeds-based writer Ian Duhig, for performances stretching from medieval to modern, monstrous to sparkling – offering a series of ‘openings’ in our currently closed-off world.

Those interested in attending the virtual event should email JT Welsch ( for a Zoom link.

With an eye to the future when we can meet in person, we hope you will join us for a celebration of all that is ongoing in creative life at York. 

Vahni Capildeo was born in Port of Spain, Trinidad, and earned their DPhil in Old Norse literature and translation theory as a Rhodes Scholar at Christ Church, University of Oxford. They are one of the most exciting contemporary poets, and highly influential as a writer, commentator, and performer. Capildeo’s poems engage themes of geographic, intimate, and linguistic distances and proximities. Their books include No Traveller Returns (2003), Utter (2013), Measures of Expatriation (winner of the 2016 Forward Prize for Best Collection), Venus as a Bear (2018), Skin Can Hold (2019), and Odyssey Calling (2020), a pamphlet written partly during a stormy night on Lindisfarne. You can find more information about their residency at York here.

Ian Duhig was born in London. He has won the National Poetry Competition twice, and in 1994 was named as one of the Poetry Society's 'New Generation' Poets. He worked for 15 years with homeless people, and has held fellowships at Lancaster, Leeds, Durham and Newcastle Universities. His poetry collections include The Bradford Count (1991, shortlisted for the Whitbread Poetry Award and Forward Prize for Best First Collection), The Mersey Goldfish (1995, shortlisted for the T.S. Eliot Prize),  Lammas Hireling (2003, shortlisted for the Eliot Prize and the Forward Prize for Best Collection), The Speed of Dark (2007, shortlisted for the Eliot Prize and Costa Poetry Award), Pandorama (2010) and The Blind Road-maker (2016, shortlisted for the Eliot and Forward Prizes). He has also written libretti and musical adaptations. Ian Duhig lives in Leeds.

Location: Online by Zoom