Speakers Corner Quartet lined up for UNQUIET show with Manchester Camerata

The South London spoken word icons are coming to New Century

By Ben Arnold | 9 August 2023

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Speakers Corner Quartet (Credit: Marc Sethi)

Speakers Corner Quartet (Credit: Marc Sethi)

South London spoken word icons Speakers Corner Quartet are heading to Manchester for a ground-breaking show at New Century. 

They’ll be collaborating with the Manchester Camerata for one of its UNQUIET series of gigs, teaming disparate artists from all genres of music with the eclectic orchestra.

Speakers Corner Quarter, which started out as a spoken word poetry event in Brixton with an in-house band, and has now expanded to become a collective of hugely talented artists, will be arriving in town mob-handed.

Among those who will be performing with the Camerata will be MCs and vocalists including Coby Sey, Confucius MC, James Massiah, Lea Sen, Leilah, Eska and Tawiah.

The show will also feature the world premiere of a brand new work by Royal Philharmonic Society composer Blasio Kavuma, which has been written especially for Manchester Camerata and the AMC Gospel Choir.

The show comes in the wake of Speakers Corner’s recent debut album, Further Out Than The Edge, more than 15 years in the making since their first shows in Brixton.

The band comprises four multi-instrumentalists – bassist Peter Bennie, drummer Kwake Bass, flautist Biscuit, and violinist Raven Bush.

The Camerata will join a host of other Speakers Corner collaborators over the years, from Joey Bada$$, Sampha, Darkstar, Lil Silva and Mica Levi to the legendary Herbie Hancock.

The Manchester Camerata at this year’s MiF (Credit: Priti Shikotra)

Meanwhile, the UNQUIET gigs have seen the city’s most unique orchestra working with the likes of Afrodeutsche, at the recent Manchester International Festival, and Carmen Villain.

“After the success of our collaboration with Afrodeutsche for Manchester International Festival, we can’t wait to get started on this edition of UNQUET with Speakers Corner Quartet,” said the Camerata’s conductor Robert Ames. 

“Working with such a fantastic act to give the world premiere of an orchestral show feels exactly like the collaboration between artists and modern orchestras that should be happening today.”

The show happens on November 22. Head to the New Century website for details, and grab tickets here.