SoapBox is a fiercely independent producer of spoken word, poetry and music events, based in Suffolk. We pride ourselves on curating high quality events that aim to surprise, challenge and entertain in equal measure. We work with Festivals, School, Universities and Private Parties so please get in touch if you would like a performer or workshop for your event. We love artists who take chances. Performers who have opinions and whose passion for their art can be felt by everyone in the room. We work with the most exciting comtemporary poets and musicians in the UK, and create performance opportunties for new artists to hone their craft.
SoapBox began as an Open Mic in Ipswich in 2006 and ten years later, we are still finding and developing new talent. Its one part of this job that we love the most. Our monthly spoken word club at the John Peel Centre, on the last Wednesday of the month, is an extension of this ethos. We book one well-known poet to headline, and have two local poets and a musician in support. Compered by Suffolk poet Dan Clark. We launched the club in spring 2016 with Hollie McNish (April), Harry Baker (May) and Salena Godden (June). We are now entering the autumn season and will welcome Jess Green (Sept), Dean Atta (Oct) and Anthony Anaxagorou (Nov).
Our biggest project every year is the SoapBox Festival Stage. We produce, programme and manage every aspect of the project. 2016 was our fifth year at this event and every year we have grown in size, due to popular demand. The SoapBox Stage takes place at FolkEast in the grounds of Glemham Hall, Suffolk, in August. We manage every aspect of the stage, from sourcing new acts, to ensuring the event runs smoothly. We are very proud to say that we handmake most everything involved in the stage from recyled materials, including our funky our pop-up bar. Every year a team of local artists and creatives meet up monthly to create new artwork for the Stage. The entrance to the marquee is marked by a giant willow tunnel, made from locally and sustainablly sourced wood. You will (literally) never see anything else like this anywhere. This is no 'cut and paste hire job'. Everthing is unique. Everything is created and conceived with love and consideration.
The SoapBox Festival Stage is run on solar power and we work very hard to keep as much waste from landfill, as we possibly can. Our lovely vegetarian caterers DragonJak's, require everyone to bring their own plate and cutlery. Its just one of the ways we are working to make sure our fun doesn't come at the expense of the planet. We source lots of the materials for our decor from websites like Freecycle and Freegle. We also work with local charity shops to take clothes that they might be otherwise putting in the bin, and put them to good use. Reimaging others rubbish into artwork for us all to enjoy. Its one of the most enjoyable parts of this project and really allows us to experiment and take chances.
August 10th 2016 marks ten years of SoapBox and we are currently working on several projects to celebrate this event. Our vast archive is being uploaded to the website and made public for the first time ever. We have recorded, filmed and photograhed almost all of our gigs and have gathered a remarkable body of work that really shows how much talent there is in East Anglia. We are proud to say that we booked many artists in their early days, who have now gone on to be household names. In the past we have put on gigs featuring Ed Sheeran, Scroobius Pip, Kate Tempest, Let's Eat Grandma, Eliza Shaddad, Luke Wright, Mark Grist, and so many more. We are similarly proud of the new and emerging artists we give a platform to. Do check back to this website throughout to hear more about the release of the archive as it happens.