With the remaining teams of the Euro 2008 resting before the all important semi-finales and university exams not taking place until next week, Tuesday, June 24th, eight pm, was the perfect time for a newleaf event. In reference to both the summer solstice and one of William Shakespeare's most famous plays, the newleaf reading at the Café Ambiente am Osterdeich was entitled "Midsummer Muses".
It was a premiere in more ways than one. To begin with, "Midsummer Muses" was the first reading organised by newleaf's new events team consisting of Ulli Burger, Jessika Koehler, Stella Recken and Jacqueline Sprindt, who rose to the occasion admirably, in spite of some chaos when two readers dropped out at the last minute due to illness. Two members of the events team, Jessika Koehler and Stella Recken, also gave their debuts as hosts.
Another new addition was Kai von Szadkowski, who entertained the audience with beautiful Irish folk ballads. Though Kai loves playing the music of Ireland, he has never actually been there, a fact he hopes to remedy soon.
The reading was opened by Barbara Assies, also a recent addition to the newleaf team. Barbara recited three poems, including a sonnet. Next up was newleaf office and finance manager Nurten Kurnaz, who read a poem and a short story discussing the importance of education to second generation immigrants. Andrea Rick demonstrated with her short story that one does not necessarily need a man to deal with spiders, a woman will do just as well, since contrary to popular belief not all members of the female sex are afflicted with arachnophobia. newleaf sales manager Cora Buhlert read an excerpt from her novel-in-progress, a recounting of a failed teen suicide. The reading was concluded by a selection of summery poems by Ole D. Herlyn, who took the audience on a poetic world tour from France via Tunisia and Wales to Sweden.
The staff at the Ambiente was great as usual, proving once again why the Café Ambiente is still our favourite venue for readings.
Photos of the event can be found at the newleaf Flickr album