What makes this 25-year-old lad from Braintree such a tough act to follow is that his he is a dazzling amalgamn of so many things. Think poetry and you may think of a dry, esoteric recital but Wright bounces on stage with the bravado of an MTV host and possess the kind of scabrous wit and sharp, satirical tongue that could see him hosting Have I Got News For You. But most of all he is a bloody good poet and a real showman. And I only hope that HRH takes note of his semi-serious election campaign/poet-ition designed to collar him the nation’s top poetry job
Wright is the co-founder of the UK’s only poetry boy band/super group Aisle 16 and Poet Laureate is his first solo show, now on a nationwide tour after a ludicrously successful run at the Edinburgh Festival, one which proves that he is a more than capable crowd pleaser even as a lone Poet Idol.
Wright may be young, but his rhyming is second to none, and his undeniable talent means he’s well placed to take a pop at the out-of-touch Motion. However the fact that he’s steeped in popular culture and well versed in the here and now, also means that he serves up incisive bits of social commentary, through poetry which covers London’s 2012 Olympic Bid, Edmonton’s Ikea Riots as well as exposing his mock crush on Richard Madely, in his hilarious poem Truly, Madely, Deeply.
What stops Wright’s talent running away with him and turning him into a smug egomanic, is his passion and enthusiasm for poetry, and his self-deprecating streak, revealed to us when he kicks the evening off with his poem, called I Don’t Get Out Of Bed For Less Than 10,000, about lying around waiting for an Arts Council Grant.
Outside of touring and writing Wright also works as a ‘creative practitioner’ teaching poetry in schools and his powerpoint presentation displaying the Thank-You cards these budding bards have written, is piss-your-pants funny.
Accompanying Wright’s poems are the Ralph Steadman-esque cartoons of Samuel W Ratcliffe which give a goulish quality to some of his puns and parodies, in particular the fictional picaresque of a Tory MP brought to life in his poem The Rise and Fall of Dudley Livingstone Esquire.
I doubt the Windsors get to many poetry gigs but I reckon that this show would go down a storm with the tabloid hogging hell raisers in the family. And as for Liz it would increase the credibility of the Monarchy no end if she just sacked Motion and instated Luke as Laureate instead.