5 Big Questions: LEMN SISSAY OBE
The Possibility ClubMay 06, 202233:3161.37 MB

5 Big Questions: LEMN SISSAY OBE

How do you let others have the good ideas? Should you give up smoking if you're going to read to children?

Are you bad busy or good busy?


In this week’s 5 Big Questions interview we talk to poet, playwright, broadcaster and campaigner LEMN SISSAY OBE

Twitter: @lemnsissay

Known for:
  • Chancellor - University of Manchester (UK)
  • Trustee - Foundling Museum
  • Official Poet - London 2012 Olympic Games
  • Winner - PEN Pinter Prize (2019)
  • Guest Artistic Director - Brighton Festival 2020 & 2021
  • Author - My Name Is Why
  • Author - The Emperor's Watchmaker
  • Playwright - Why I Don't Hate White People
  • Playwright - Refugee Boy
The Big 5 Questions:
  1. How do you measure the impact of what you do?
  2. How should people/businesses be preparing for the future?
  3. How do we build the workforce we need for that future?
  4. How do you use creativity to solve problems?
  5. How do you collaborate?
Key quotes:

“I tried to take the word ‘busy’ out of my dictionary some years ago, because I’m doing what I love.”

"Art refuses to disappear because human beings refuse to disappear.”

“I’ve come to realise later in life that you’ve got to give it away to keep it. It’s the strangest thing but if you need help, try helping someone else.”

“I went from smoking thirty a day to none, on the tenth January. I’d been stinky most of my adult life.”

“I am proud to be a creative and artist and writer and I think that creativity is not only the monopoly of artists.”

“I’m learning to be quiet and to listen — and to listen beyond just the first idea. It’s a much more fulfilling way to work, with a group who are looking how to make an idea happen.”

“Teamwork isn’t just people that I choose.”



Useful links:

website: // www.lemnsissay.com/

Wikipedia: // wikipedia.org/wiki/Lemn_Sissay

Brighton Festival Director legacy page: // brightonfestival.org/about-the-festival/past-guest-directors/20202021-lemn-sissay-mbe/

Lemn Sissay — Don’t Ask The Dragon (children’s book) // hive.co.uk/Product/Lemn-Sissay/Dont-Ask-the-Dragon/26765413

Allen Carr’s Easy Way To Stop Smoking (Amazon link) // amazon.co.uk/Allen-Carrs-Easy-Stop-Smoking/dp/1405923318/

Jude Kelly (Wikipedia) // wikipedia.org/wiki/Jude_Kelly

Extinction Rebellion // extinctionrebellion.uk/

Sex Pistols — Never Mind The Bollocks (Spotify link) // spotify.com/album/6ggO3YVhyonYuFWUPBRyIv?si=CGb49HRcT_Wk3s7SpWqhpA

Lawrence Ferlinghetti (Wikipedia) // wikipedia.org/wiki/Lawrence_Ferlinghetti

Leftfield — Leftism 22 (Spotify link) // spotify.com/album/60ZB7LXiHfzipDY4EME38o?si=6SwMMSw8S_-QwHCqiIfqOQ

City Lights books // citylights.com/

Lemn Sissay — My Name Is Why (memoir) // hive.co.uk/Product/Lemn-Sissay/My-Name-Is-Why/24742388

Lemn Sissay — Something Dark (memoir / theatre script) // hive.co.uk/Product/Lemn-Author-Sissay/Something-Dark/21234053

Lemn Sissay — Morning Breaks In The Elevator (poetry) // hive.co.uk/Product/Lemn-Sissay/Morning-Breaks-In-The-Elevator/2568872


This episode was recorded in April 2022

Interviewer: Richard Freeman for always possible

Editor: CJ Thorpe-Tracey for Lo Fi Arts