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Cardiff Character: Sarah McCreadie

When you sit down with performer and poet, Sarah McCreadie: you learn that girls are gods and poetry, like punk, is not dead

Performer and poet, Sarah McCreadie outside Cathays Library.

As soon as Sarah McCreadie steps into Little Man Coffee, she opens her arms in greeting, apologising for her rain-soaked coat. She is soft-spoken, affable, and wearing a Cardiff City football jumper over her day-job uniform.

Sarah, 26, is an only child who found time to play with rhymes on her way to school. When she got there, though she was exposed to poetry, it was nothing that she felt she could connect with. It was when she began taking creative writing classes at university that Sarah discovered that modern poetry gave her a voice at a time when she was struggling.

She says, “When you’re in your late teens and early 20s, you go through a lonely period and I kind of isolated myself. I did a year in America, my second year of university, and that’s when it kind of took off for me. That’s when I realised things about my sexuality and I realised things about myself and what I wanted to be – and that was a writer.”

Poetry as a profession

Sarah is currently Resident Artist at the Roundhouse Theatre in Bristol. Her relationship with them began back in 2015, through a BBC Xtra project called “Words First” which continues to seek out fresh and new poetry voices ages 25 and under.

From there, she stayed connected with the Roundhouse and applied for further projects through them. Sarah says, “I eventually joined the Poetry Collective which was another life-changing thing for me and from then on, I applied to be a Resident Artist there and I got accepted which is an incredible experience – to be able to represent a theatre like the Roundhouse. I was just this kid from Cardiff out there doing my poetry. It’s an incredible relationship and I have a lot to thank the Roundhouse for.”

Sarah performing her work in front of a live audience. Credit: Fizzi Events

“Oh God I don’t even know,” she says, when asked what she would be doing if she weren’t a poet. “To me it’s, like, even if I wasn’t getting any opportunities and nobody was listening, I would still do this. If nobody was giving me money to do it, I would still do it. It’s as natural as kicking a ball was to David Beckham. I can’t really imagine myself not being able to write or make up rhymes or rap about my day to day life.”

What’s next?

Sarah would like to work on incorporating music into her poetry. It seems to be the next natural step as poetry has always been intrinsically linked to music for her.

“Rap manages to feel fresh and current,” she says, “But it has its origins in one of our oldest art forms. I don’t know why we teach the poetry we do in schools. It seems frozen in time.”

She also intends to keep performing, writing new material, and hopes to record again with BBC Sesh.

Sarah’s next performance is at Clwb Ifor Bach on 23 November where she will be supporting punk band, Listener.

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