The Kindergarten Teacher Preview + Live Poetry from Deanna Rodger & Theresa Lola

  • Corrina Antrobus
  • Ike Khan

For International Women’s Week, Bechdel Test Fest are hosting a preview screening of The Kindergarten Teacher plus spoken word poetry from the incredible Deanna Rodger and Theresa Lola. Working alongside Thunderbird Film Distribution, Bechdel Test Fest are supporting the release of this female-led film by bringing our ever-growing and engaged audience to a specially-curated event in the bustle of Hackney's Rio Cinema. Stunning cinema meets moving poetry in Director Sara Colangelo’s retelling of Nadav Lapid’s 2014 stirring psychological drama which won her Best Director at Sundance film festival 2018 (and was one of my favourite films of the festivals last year). Maggie Gyllenhaal stars as Lisa – a Staten Island kindergarten teacher who discovers a poet prodigy in her five-year-old student Jimmy. As Lisa drifts apart from her family and struggles to find a voice writing poetry, she develops a fascination with Jimmy and spirals downward on a dangerous and desperate path in an attempt to nurture his talent while finding her own. Also stars Gael García Bernal and a breakout performance from a young Parker Sevak. Bechdel Test Fest found this a perfect fit as it champions the work of up and coming director Director Sara Colangelo. In her own words: “The story provides what I think is a nuanced, complex lead role for a 40- something woman— an unfortunate rarity in both Hollywood and the independent film industry. Finally, it has been a unique opportunity to discuss what role, if any, poetry has in modern American life” Following the film we’ve invited two of the most exciting poets around – Deanna Rodger and Theresa Loloa. Deana has been named ‘ELLE UK’s ’30 inspirational women under 30′, The Female Lead’s ’20intheir20s’, Cosmopolitan’s ‘No.1 trailblazing woman’ and youngest UK Poetry Slam Champion (2007/8). Theresa Lola is a British Nigerian poet and workshop facilitator. She is the joint winner of the 2018 Brunel International African Poetry Prize and was shortlisted for the 2017 Bridport Poetry Prize. In April 2018 she was invited by the Mayor of London’s Office to read a commissioned poem alongside Mayor of London Sadiq Khan at the unveiling of Millicent Fawcett’s statue. Theresa has facilitated poetry workshops at St Mary’s University, as well as primary and secondary schools. Her debut collection is ‘In Search of Equilibrium’ released February 2019 published by Nine Arches Press, described as an ‘extraordinary, and exacting study of death and grieving.‘ We felt these poets would compliment the evocative work of the poets commissioned to write poems for the film's script - the incredible Kaveh Akbar and Ocean Vuong.