A woman with short hair smiling in front of a red background

Makar to Makar

A new series of live-streamed conversation, spoken word and music gigs

Created and curated by Jackie Kay

In March, with a global pandemic leading to a national lockdown, the National Poet for Scotland or Makar Jackie Kay began work on a show that would provide a little light in a dark time. Bringing together poetry, music and conversation, Kay’s show, Makar to Makar, recreated her childhood memories of parties held in her living room where everyone would take a turn reciting a poem or singing.

Kicking off in May, Makar to Makar ran for 14 weeks across a turbulent summer of protest and uncertainty, providing an hour of calm every Thursday evening when the show streamed. Over 14 shows, 21 performers appeared including former National Poet Liz Lochhead, Don Paterson, crime writer Val McDermid, and actor Adjoa Andoh as part of a diverse and lively programme.

Now, with the nights drawing in, and a nip in the air, Jackie Kay invites you to join her once more in ‘the Zoom Room’ as she prepares a special Christmas treat. For a seasonal version of the show, Makar to Cracker, she’s assembled a bill anyone would be delighted to find in their Christmas stocking. The line-up will be announced on St Andrews Day, with the show itself streaming on Thursday 17 December, 7pm. Sit down with a dram and a mince pie as Kay brings you yuletide poems, songs and conversation to warm a snowman’s heart.

On Thursday 28 January, 7pm Jackie Kay invites the nation and the world to join her for a virtual Burns Night. With guest stars to be announced in January, Kay will raise a dram in tribute to the Bard and offer her own take on Burns Night traditions such as the Toast to the Lassies. So dry clean your kilt and get mashing those tatties; pandemic or not, Jackie Kay will be paying a very special tribute, from one national poet to another.

For more information visit makar2makar.com

Produced by the National Theatre of Scotland in association with HOME Manchester, Edinburgh International Book Festival and School of Arts and Media, Salford

How to watch Makar to Cracker

New episodes will be available to watch right here on Thursday 17 December at 7pm and on Thursday 28 January at 7pm.

Listen to collected poems

You can listen to selected poems from the series on our soundcloud channel.