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George Szirtes

9 Podcast Episodes

Latest 6 Aug 2022 | Updated Daily

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George Szirtes

Private Passions

George Szirtes arrived in Britain at the age of eight, wearing only one shoe. It was 1956, and as the Soviet tanks rolled into Budapest, George and his family fled on foot across the border to Austria, eventually ending up (with many others) as refugees in London. It was such a hasty journey that one of his shoes got lost on the way. From a very early age, he wanted to be a poet – and he has certainly fulfilled that ambition over the last forty years, publishing close to 20 books of prize-winning poetry, and as many translations from Hungarian literature. His moving memoir, The Photographer at 16, won the James Tait Black Prize and was recently broadcast on Radio 4.George talks to Michael from his house in Wymondham, an old butcher’s shop which he and his wife, the artist Clarissa Upchurch, have decorated with dramatic murals. He discusses his memories of leaving Hungary, walking across the border, and about how he then went further back, reconstructing his mother’s incarceration in concentration camps during the War. He explains too the project of writing a poem every day on Twitter, which has enlivened this strange period of lockdown. His playlist includes Tallis, Bartók, Bach, Ravel and Berlioz – as well as an early blues recording from 1931. What they all have in common, he says, is that each opened a door for him into a new world. Produced by Elizabeth BurkeA Loftus Media production for BBC Radio 3

35mins

9 May 2021

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Episode 11: George Szirtes, Joannie Stangeland, & Angelique Stevens

NER Out Loud

Simone Edgar Holmes presents NER writers George Szirtes, Joannie Stangeland, and Angelique Stevens reading their new work.Listen in as George Szirtes reads his poem “English Rain,” Joannie Stangeland reads her poem “Parcel,” and Angelique Stevens reads from her memoir “The Only Light We've Got”—all published in recent issues of the New England Review.

29mins

28 Aug 2020

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15 - The Paul Street Boys (Ferenc Molnár, read by George Szirtes)

Around the World in 80 Books

A Hungarian youth classic novel of war and friendship, here is an excerpt from chapter 1, read by a most illustrious guest: British/Hungarian poet and literary translator George Szirtes.

9mins

24 May 2020

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George Szirtes Sums Up the Worlds Literature Festival Provocations 2015

The Writing Life

George Szirtes gives a summing up of the Worlds provocations 2015 and the discussions they inspired in our final Worlds Literature Festival provocation.

33mins

21 Jun 2015

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Worlds Literature Festival - George Szirtes Summing Up

The Writing Life

George Szirtes sums up the Worlds Literature Festival provocations.

35mins

18 Aug 2014

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Worlds Literature Festival Salon Provocation 8: George Szirtes

The Writing Life

At the ninth annual Worlds Literature Festival Salon event, the international writers present were tasked with examining Ways of Writing: Ways of Reading - how literature and story-telling have been affected by economic and digital changes. George Szirtes takes on the massive task of summing up the essays, conversations and questions delivered throughout the week.

22mins

24 Jun 2013

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[SPL] March 2013: George Szirtes

Scottish Poetry Library Podcast

The SPL caught up with George Szirtes at the StAnza poetry festival in March, 2013. In town to read from his new collection Bad Machine (Bloodaxe), George Szirtes spoke to Colin Waters about memory, photography, Twitter and 1960s garage pop. Photo by Caroline Forbes.

33mins

19 Mar 2013

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Jo Shapcott & George Szirtes: The Granta Podcast, Ep. 32

Granta

Poets Jo Shapcott and George Szirtes on their poems inspired by Titian's interpetations of Ovid.

42mins

13 Jul 2012

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George Szirtes Plenary at the Worlds Literature Festival Salon: Thursday 23rd June 2011

The Writing Life

George Szirtes Plenary at the Worlds Literature Festival Salon: Thursday 23rd June 2011 by National Centre for Writing

25mins

8 Jul 2011