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Nigel Forde

  • About
  • NIGEL FORDE was born in 1944 and educated at Grammar School and Oxford University. Originally intending to be a musician, he sang in the Collegium Musicum, played in the University Orchestra, the St. Catherine's String Quartet and took lessons from Jean Pougnet whom he met while playing in the Dolmetsch Ensemble for the Haslemere Festival. Music still plays a large part in his poetry.

    He became an actor in the company at York Theatre Royal and soon found himself writing, directing and composing for the theatre. Having written for and performed with several companies he co-founded Riding Lights Theatre Company, now resident at Friargate Theatre, York.

    He was regularly heard on BBC Radio 4 for ten years; first as resident poet on Midweek, and then as the presenter of Bookshelf. He has been a contributor to scores of other radio and TV programmes, writing features, plays, talks and poems, and reading A Book at Bedtime.

    He has read for, and chaired discussions at all the major British Literary Festivals, tutored on courses run by the Arvon Foundation, the Taliesin Centre, and the Performing Arts Lab. and has sat on literary award panels including the Whitbread Book of the Year, the Betty Trask and the Gollancz Fantasy Prize.

    He has worked as a lyricist with Arnold Wesker on a musical of 'The Kitchen' and on a number of screenplays: three for the BBC2/S4C series 'Testament' one of which won an Emmy; monologues for Claire Bloom and Jonathan Pryce; and a short film 'Timoon' which won Special Distinction in a TV Series at the Anney International Animation Festival.

    In York he runs a branch of The Poetry School, lecturing and running seminars, and is a visiting lecturer at St. John's College, Durham, and St John's College York.

    He has published seven books to date; the Oxford/Carcanet collection  The Choir Outing (2010) is his latest.
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