Manawatu poets Chris Gallavin, Rachel Doré and Tim Saunders bring Magpies, a show featuring the band Ceol Manawatu, live to The Grand Hotel on Sunday, May 5.

Doré hopes the Whanganui audience who enjoyed last year's performance will be back for more and bring their friends and family.

"It will be funny, moving, and a just bit over the top," she says.

"We plan on showing just how much fun poetry can be."


She describes herself as a creative coach, a painter and event organiser, with a passion for social history.

Whatever else she is doing, she can't stop writing poetry, she says.

As the organiser of the Manawatu Writers' Festival, Doré teamed up with Saunders and Gallavin after meeting them at a poetry night she facilitated.

"We realised we shared the love of storytelling through poetry."

Saunders has published his poetry and short stories in the NZ Listener, Flash Frontier and last year he was winner of the Mindfood magazine Short Story Competition.

When he is not writing, he farms sheep and cattle near Palmerston North.

"I try to write poems that are accessible and will appeal to any audience anywhere," he says.

When Chris Gallavin is not writing and reciting poetry he is performing his duties as professor and deputy pro-vice-chancellor of humanities and social sciences at Massey University's Palmerston North campus.

Otherwise, he is reciting poetry in "random but strangely appropriate places" like the Kimbolton Hotel or fish and chip shops where the price of listening is a fish and a scoop.

As well as their own work, a Whanganui audience can expect to hear the trio recite works by Glover, Hunt, Shadbolt, Crump and others, with a few surprises thrown in.

"We have been rehearsing with Ceol Manawatu and it is fantastic what they do," says Doré.

"They work intuitively with us to enhance what we are reciting."

The price of entry to the Whanganui show is a donation of paper money of any amount deemed appropriate which will be donated to the Guyton Group Trust for the development of an arts precinct.

Chairwoman Lesley Stead says the support from Manawatu artists is "hugely appreciated" by the trust and she is thrilled to see how well poetry events are being supported in Whanganui.

"We have had to turn people away from the Phantom Bill Stickers National Poetry Day events we've hosted in Whanganui.

"I hope the Magpies poetry night will attract plenty of poetry lovers as well - it should be a great night."

Magpies at the Grand: The Grand Hotel, St Hill St, 6.30pm, Sunday, May 5 at 6.30pm. Book early for dinner.