literature & poetry

Southbank Centre is the home of literature and spoken word events in the UK, the venue for London Literature Festival and Poetry International. Our programme is brimming with today’s best-selling authors, award-winning poetry and spoken word, and dramatised readings of iconic novels from some of the world’s most inspiring writers.

see literature & poetry events

 

When you write, you are a despot, you’re a dictator. You have absolute power over life and death.
Philip Pullman, speaking at Southbank Centre in 2017
Literature can take us into lives we might think are far from our own
Ted Hodgkinson, Southbank Centre Senior Programmer, Literature & Spoken Word

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For your best chance to secure tickets to events featuring the biggest names in literature, become a Southbank Centre Member.

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Multi-buy discount

Multi-buy discounts are available for some events. The discount varies by event and is calculated as you add more tickets to your basket. The more events you buy tickets for, the more you save.

Look out for the yellow multi-buy label on event listings.

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7:30 pm
Tue 26 Jun 2018
7:30 pm | Tue 26 Jun 2018
Performance & Dance
Cabaret
The renowned LGBTQ+ literary salon returns, with readings by Philip Hensher and others
The renowned LGBTQ+ literary salon returns, with readings by Philip Hensher and others

Free

Free

Various times
until 13 Jul 2018
Various times | until 13 Jul 2018
Literature
Poetry
A short session of nursery rhymes and poems for under 5s and their carers
A short session of nursery rhymes and poems for under 5s and their carers

Free

Free

6:30 pm
Mon 02 Jul 2018
6:30 pm | Mon 02 Jul 2018
Gigs
Folk & World
Consider the Nobel Prize-winning musician’s lyrics from throughout his storied career
Consider the Nobel Prize-winning musician’s lyrics from throughout his storied career

Free

Free

8:00 pm
Wed 04 Jul 2018
8:00 pm | Wed 04 Jul 2018
Literature
Poetry
Discover the work of the countercultural poetry publisher in this showcase
Discover the work of the countercultural poetry publisher in this showcase
7:45 pm
Sat 14 Jul 2018
7:45 pm | Sat 14 Jul 2018
Classical music
Choral
The Braid Ensemble debuts emotionally charged vocal and instrumental works by composer David Braid
The Braid Ensemble debuts emotionally charged vocal and instrumental works by composer David Braid
7:30 pm
Mon 16 Jul 2018
7:30 pm | Mon 16 Jul 2018
Literature
Poetry
Hear specially commissioned literary responses to our Lee Bul exhibition
Hear specially commissioned literary responses to our Lee Bul exhibition
Paul Burston_Polari_image_credit_justin david
7:30 pm
Tue 24 Jul 2018
7:30 pm | Tue 24 Jul 2018
Literature
Poetry
The beloved LGBTQ+ literary salon hears from Lesley Thomson and more in this midsummer outing
The beloved LGBTQ+ literary salon hears from Lesley Thomson and more in this midsummer outing
7:30 pm
Wed 25 Jul 2018
7:30 pm | Wed 25 Jul 2018
Literature
Poetry
Enjoy exciting new voices at the Poetry Book Society's Summer Showcase at Southbank Centre
Enjoy exciting new voices at the Poetry Book Society's Summer Showcase at Southbank Centre
Language Shift, collage art

Free

Free

Various times
26 Jul 2018 - 23 Sep 2018
Various times | 26 Jul 2018 - 23 Sep 2018
Literature
Poetry
Explore visual artwork that maps poems written in endangered European languages in this exhibition
Explore visual artwork that maps poems written in endangered European languages in this exhibition

Free

Free

7:30 pm
Thu 26 Jul 2018
7:30 pm | Thu 26 Jul 2018
Art
Literature
Witness visual and literary responses to endangered European languages at this exhibition launch
Witness visual and literary responses to endangered European languages at this exhibition launch

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literature & poetry highlights

1 Jul
Literature
Spoken word & Live literature
Hear Margo Jefferson talk to Reni Eddo-Lodge about pop icon Michael Jackson
8 Jul
Literature
Writers
Don’t miss the literary event of the year, as the winner of the Golden Man Booker is announced
see all events

blog: literature & poetry

story
Discover the books on the shortlist and what drove the judges to select them
story
Pulitzer Prize-winning critic and author Margo Jefferson on one of the great and controversial icons of the 20th century