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South Bank Centre Announces Christopher Eccleston, PJ Harvey and Sarah Pascoe in Lineup for its Coming Literature Season

  • Southbank Centre announces Marina Abramovi?, Nikki Amuka-Bird, MyAnna Buring, Christopher Eccleston, PJ Harvey, Sara Pascoe and Slavoj Žižek as a part of the Autumn/Winter 2016 Literature programme

  • Christopher Eccleston, MyAnna Buring and Nikki Amuka-Bird perform a reading of HG Wells' classic The Time Machine on the opening day of the 10th London Literature Festival: Living in Future Times in Royal Festival Hall (5 October)

  • National Poetry Day Live features readings from Mercury Prize-winning artist PJ Harvey. The free annual celebration of the UK's poetry scene has a packed programme of live performances by top poets and free activities (6 October)

  • Louis Theroux's My Scientology Movie screening and exclusive in-person Q&A hosted by comedian Adam Buxton in Royal Festival Hall and broadcast live to over 120 cinemas across the country (10 October)

  • Comedian Sara Pascoe hosts this year's Man Booker Prize Readings, as the 2016 shortlisted authors come together for an evening of readings and conversation (24 October)

  • Eminent Slovenian Philosopher Slavoj Žižek discusses his new book, Disparities (31 October)

  • Coinciding with the publication of her memoir, Walking Through Walls, world-renowned performance artist Marina Abramovi? reflects on her career spanning five decades in an exclusive London event held in Royal Festival Hall (7 November)

  • Southbank Centre hosts The Forward Prizes for Poetry 2016 on 20 September 2016, and the TS Eliot Prize Readings on 15 January 2017

Ted Hodgkinson, Senior Programmer, Literature and Spoken Word, said: "We're absolutely delighted to announce Christopher Eccleston, MyAnna Buring and Nikki Amuka-Bird as the cast of three, reading HG Wells' The Time Machine. The 10th London Literature Festival: Living in Future Times is fast approaching and the performance will be a fantastic way to mark 150 years since the birth of HG Wells and the opening of the festival.

The Autumn/Winter literature programme has something for all literature lovers and ages; from free events taking place on National Poetry Day and an exclusive Q&A with Marina Abramovi? to celebrate the release of her memoirs, to the ever important Forward Prizes, Man Booker Prize Readings and the TS Eliot Prize Readings, celebrating the very best in new poetry and writing."


Christopher Eccleston (Doctor Who, Shallow Grave, Elizabeth, Thor) performs the role of the time traveller in a new, specially commissioned adaptation and live reading of HG Wells' classic, The Time Machine, directed by Cedering Fox of WordTheatre®, marking 150 years since HG Wells' birth and the opening of Southbank Centre's 10th London Literature Festival. Eccleston is joined by MyAnna Buring (Doctor Who, Twilight, Downton Abbey, Ripper Street) and Nikki Amuka-Bird (Luther, Quarry, Survivors) to form a cast of three, accompanied by music on the Royal Festival Hall organ from James McVinnie.

This year's London Literature Festival (5 - 16 October 2016) explores the theme Living in Future Times. The festival rediscovers far-sighted classics and examines how we are already living in an era predicted by Science Fiction, celebrating the work of the world's most visionary established and upcoming writers and artists.

The festival includes an array of world-renowned writers, futurologists and transhumanists. The line-up includes John Agard, Riz Ahmed, Naomi Alderman, Margaret Atwood, Kat Banyard, Caroline Bergvall, Lauren Beukes, Malorie Blackman, Hassan Blasim, Teju Cole, Richard Dawkins, Marcus Du Sautoy, Michel Faber, Tom Gauld, Isabel Greenberg, Xiaolu Guo, Etgar Keret, Deborah Levy, Cixin Liu, Eimear McBride, Kei Miller, Caitlin Moran, Paul Morley, Neel Mukherjee, Edna O'Brien, Iain Pears, Nikesh Shukla, Di Speirs, Chimene Suleyman, Louis Theroux, Thomas Thwaites (GoatMan), Louisa Treger, Ed Yong and Alejandro Zambra.


Presented by Southbank Centre and The Poetry Society, National Poetry Day Live features readings from Mercury Prize-winning artist PJ Harvey. The annual free celebration of the UK's thriving poetry scene is part of London Literature Festival and features a packed programme of live performances by top poets and free activities for the public. Hosted by Inua Ellams and Indigo Williams, this year's event features readings, activities and performances on the theme of 'messages'. The line-up includes poets Rob Auton, Salena Godden, Keaton Henson, Luke Kennard, Fran Lock, Hannah Lowe, John Lyons, Sabrina Mahfouz, Ian McMillan, Simon Mole, Cheryl Moskowitz and Hannah Silva.


Comedian Adam Buxton hosts an exclusive in-person Q&A with Louis Theroux following the screening of Theroux's first theatrical feature documentary My Scientology Movie in Royal Festival Hall. The film delves into one of the world's most mysterious and powerful religions in what he regards as 'The Holy Grail of Stories'. The sold out event which is a part of London Literature Festival is broadcast live to over 120 cinemas across the country.


This year, the Young Adult Literature Weekender takes over The Clore Ballroom in the heart of Southbank Centre, for the final weekend of London Literature Festival. The weekend features talks on love, friendship, politics, feminism, sci-fi, dystopia and fantasy; plus the most exciting YA novelists, poets, bloggers, illustrators, and spoken word artists, from rising stars to the legends of YA. The full line-up includes Catherine Anyango, Kenny Baraka, Sara Barnard, Malorie Blackman, Holly Bourne, Sarah Crossan, Juno Dawson, Emily Drabble, Sally Green, Mariam Khan, Patrice Lawrence, Sungju Lee, Rachel Long, Femi Martin, Hollie McNish, Chibundu Onuzo, David Owen, Polarbear, Non Pratt, Lucy Prowrie, Harriet Reuter Hapgood, Samantha Shannon, Jess Vallance and Luke Wright.


The Man Booker Prize is a touchstone for the finest literary fiction, with its canon containing some of the greatest writers of the past 50 years. Comedian Sara Pascoe hosts this year's event featuring the shortlisted authors for an evening of readings and conversation, offering the audience the chance to find out all about their novels. The shortlist is announced on 13 September. The winner is announced on 25 October.

SLAVOJ ŽIŽEK (31 October)

Eminent Slovenian philosopher and leading contemporary cultural critic Slavoj Žižek discusses his new book, Disparities (publishing 20 October) which examines a new philosophical concept of disparity.

Described by the New Yorker as the "Elvis of cultural theory" and by the Guardian as "the thinker of choice for the Internet generation", Žižek takes the audience on a philosophical exploration of his radical new thinking on this topic.


Coinciding with the publication of her memoir, Walking Through Walls, world-renowned performance artist Marina Abramovi? talks about her life, career and influences in an exclusive, intimate evening in Royal Festival Hall.

From major international retrospectives of her work to collaborations with Lady Gaga and Jay Z, Abramovi?'s fearless explorations of the limits of the body and potential of the mind have transcended the arts and won admirers across the world.

In this exclusive event, Abramovi? reflects on a career spanning five decades, and talks about how her life has informed her work, from her childhood in communist ex-Yugoslavia, to her relationship with West German performance artist Ulay, who was her lover and sole collaborator for 12 years.


Southbank Centre is delighted to once again host the annual Forward Prizes for Poetry on 20 September 2016. Now in their 25th year, the Forward Prizes remain dedicated to heralding fresh new voices as well as commemorating famous names from the world of poetry. Between the prize givings, the audience hears readings from the ten collections chosen by the Forward judges from the full range of poetry published in the UK and Ireland over the last 12 months. The shortlist is published on the Southbank Centre's website here and this year's judging panel is chaired by Malika Booker, with Liz Berry, Don Share, George Szirtes and Tracey Thorn.

Southbank Centre looks forward to the new year and once again hosting the TS Eliot Prize Readings (15 January 2017). In a special event, the ten shortlisted authors for the prestigious TS Eliot Prize 2016 read from their work the evening before the £15,000 prize winner is announced. The TS Eliot Prize is awarded annually to the author of the best new poetry collection published in the UK or Ireland. It is judged by a panel of established poets, this year chaired by Ruth Padel, alongside Julia Copus and Alan Gillis, and has been described by Sir Andrew Motion as 'the Prize most poets want to win'. The shortlist is announced in October and the winner is announced on Monday 16 January 2017.

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