Town-Hall-2011-05-0308-
MBORO-HOCKEY-YOUTH-473
Duke-of-Kent086
Brazier
Inbox-1
Remebrance-18-3
Big-Bull
BABRURY-XC-JUMP-473
Brooks-Williams1
4MI-2013-11-28030
Sunset
Remebrance-18-2
Landscape
MYFC005
Torch-2012-05-23093-
Camilla-2012-10-19152
White-Horse
Silbury-Sunset---10-06-08-----07
YELLOWHAMMER-473-
Sunset2
D812668
D4S0472
Marlborough-under-snow-from-above---Pete-Davies
JazzFestSat572
Tina-May5
TdB-Pewsey044
Hares017cropped
Bluebells-in-West-Woods-10-05-09------30
Camilla-MSM
IMG8472
Musical-Time-Machine5
Inquisitive-sheep-in-West-Overton
Snowy-High-Street
Inbox2
Turin-Brakes6
Roving-Crows1
Gordon-and-Sam
SBJ
George-Wilding-301
IMG9097
Christmas-Lights15-11-20097
Civic-Service-18
Pete-Gage-Band1
EARLY-MORNING-CANTER-473-
Marlborough-2013-04-18StPeters
Remebrance-18-1
D4S9273
Scouting-for-Girls7
Mop-Fair---10-10-09------08
FROSTY-MORNING-
Ogbourne
Animals06
1stXV-and-others-with-Mayor

 

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Alan Johnson: Very humbling, very moving, and very entertaining. The very best of Marlborough Lit Fest

 

To sit in front of Alan Johnson at Marlborough Lit Fest in 2018 and hear him so gleefully describe his joy at discovering music was an absolute privilege.  The charisma of this man - slum inhabitant, orphan, postman, union rep, MP then Secretary of State - shone from the Town Hall stage as he enthralled us all with his tales of playing his first ever discs to being a band on the run.  

Such is the magic of the Lit Fest. Not only do you get up close and personal with enigmatic authors, you also become enveloped in their thoughts, views and stories.  You get to ask them questions directly, laugh with them and chastise them.  The interviewers are always thoughtful, respectful and extraordinarily well informed.  Everyone is interested, so you’re in the company of like minds, and there’s a proper sense of bonhomie.  Against this background, Alan Johnson became, for me, the best guest author so far.  He was eloquent, funny, self-effacing, persuasive and - most important of all - he was clearly delighted to be in Marlborough and thrilled to have the opportunity to talk to his audience.  

There was no sense of ‘just another book tour’ or ‘market town Lit Fest’.  Alan Johnson had around an hour but I suspect he would have gone on and on, regaling tales of fifties London and bringing to life his family members and mates, and the formation of his band.  His descriptions were so evocative it was as though the people he told us about were all on stage together with him, playing out his memories - initially trying to make the best of life in the squalor of a Notting Hill boarding house, to the excitement of receiving knock-off guitars, to the auditioning of band members – all against a background set list of rock ‘n roll, rockabilly and skiffle music.

 

So my favourite visiting author was Alan Johnson.   Very humbling, very moving, and very entertaining.  The very best of Marlborough Lit Fest.

 

 

Sarah MacLennan

 

 

Print Email

TdB-Pewsey044
Bluebells-in-West-Woods-10-05-09---30
Camilla-MSM
Musical-Time-Machine5
Ogbourne
IMG8472
Camilla-2012-10-19152
Remebrance-18-3
Silbury-Sunset---10-06-08---07
Scouting-for-Girls7
4MI-2013-11-28030
Torch-2012-05-23093-
ARKManton-2012-01-1449-
Hares017cropped
Roving-Crows1
Snowy-High-Street
Landscape
White-Horse
Brazier
Duke-of-Kent086
D4S0472
Tina-May5
Sunset2
Big-Bull
1stXV-and-others-with-Mayor
Pete-Gage-Band1
Inquisitive-sheep-in-West-Overton
IMG9097
MYFC005
Remebrance-18-2
Animals06
D812668
Gordon-and-Sam
Remebrance-18-1
Marlborough-under-snow-from-above---Pete-Davies
SBJ
D4S9273
Christmas-Lights15-11-20097
Turin-Brakes6
Mop-Fair---10-10-09---08
JazzFestSat572
Brooks-Williams1
Civic-Service-18
Sunset
George-Wilding-301
Marlborough-2013-04-18StPeters
Town-Hall-2011-05-0308-
CivicSelfie1