Robert Burns: Not in my Name (2 stars)

This article is from 2011

Robert Burns: Not in my Name

Tracing the final years of the Bard

Political activist, prolific blogger and former Rebel Inc proprietor Kevin Williamson traces the last few years of Burns’ life via the poems that were considered too dangerous for the Bard to claim as his own. A blend of multimedia and spoken word performance highlights a mix of satirical rants, including a few bitter verses etched into a window which rail against his poverty-stricken state and the very funny, but very dirty ‘Ode to Spring’, a bizarre, sweary orgy of men, women and beasts.

Williamson adopts a Liam Gallagher-esque stance to deliver his rather earnest readings, which are broken up by dream-like video sequences placing the poems in context. It’s interesting, but perhaps one more suited to Burns aficionados looking to learn a little more about their subject rather than the mainstream.

National Library of Scotland, 226 0000, until 12 Aug & 24–28 Aug, 7pm, £8 (£5).

Robert Burns: Not in My Name

Linked by a sequence of video narratives this is the radical subversive poetry of Robert Burns, the dangerous stuff he couldn't put his name to during his lifetime, performed by poet, iconoclast, and counter-culture legend, Kevin Williamson (founder of the (in)famous Rebel Inc publishing house). From the vicious political…

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