The Word is our monthly literary programme and has its roots in a colourful past. In the 1970s, a variegated group of word artists travelled around under the name Amsterdam Poets Circus. In varying and always spectacular line-ups the group performed both at home and abroad. Diana Ozon, Johnny van Doorn, Simon Vinkenoog, Hans Plomp, Omoroka, Aja Waalwijk and many others participated in these happenings. Foreign guests such as Lawrence Ferlinghetti, Louise Landes Levi, Heathcote Williams, Ira Cohen, and Eddie Woods also liked to join in if they were in the area. Publisher Jos Knipscheer and globetrotter “Soyo” Benn Posset organised a festival that became one of the most important poetry events in Europe: One World Poetry, in which the Poets Circus fully participated. ‘We encountered Patti Smith, Allen Ginsberg, Linton Kwesi Jones, Nanao Sakaki, William Burroughs, Jean-Jacques Lebel, Yevgeny Yevtushenko, and other “greats” of that time. This resulted in a tour through the US, with the participation of Remco Campert, Jules Deelder, Simon Vinkenoog, Leo van der Zalm and Hans Plomp. The famous publishing house City Lights published translations of our poems (1982). With Rudolph at the wheel of the Airbus, the Balloon Company travelled with One World Poetry to an unforgettable festival in the revolutionary city of Bologna. Rob van Tour had meanwhile joined the staff of One World Poetry and after the death of Soyo Benn, Rob and Hans set up a stage for the avant-garde in Ruigoord: The Word.’
After Rob moved his activities elsewhere, Yvonne van Doorn and Hans formed a great couple, who for decades have been conjuring up a fascinating monthly literary programme on the church’s stage. More than 1,000 word and music artists from all corners of the world have performed at The Word and the annual Fiery Tongues festival.
This cultural treasure is preserved in the audio archive that our sound lady has been recording since the beginning of this century.
“Ruigoord a miracle,
never goes under.” (Simon Vinkenoog)
Watch the video archives on Youtube.