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aka The Dogfather, Apeman Mudgeon...


Adrian Mitchell


"In his many public performances in this country and around the world, he shifted English poetry from correctness and formality towards inclusiveness and political passion.


Mitchell's original plays and stage adaptations, performed on mainstream national stages and fringe venues, on boats and in nature, add up to a musical, epic and comic form of theatre, a poet's drama worthy of Aristophanes and Lorca. Across the spectrum of his prolific output, through wars, oppressions and deceptive victories, he remained a beacon of hope in darkening times."

"He was a natural pacifist, a playful, deeply serious peacemonger and an instinctive democrat.


"Most people ignore most poetry because most poetry ignores most people," he wrote in the preface to his first volume, Poems (1964). For all his strong convictions, he abhorred solemnity. From Red Pepper, a small leftwing magazine, he gleefully accepted a nomination as "shadow Poet Laureate", and demolished royalty, cultural fashions and pretensions in monthly satirical sallies.


The musical nature of Adrian's imagination led him to work with a cavalcade of composers and performers: Andy Roberts, Richard Peaslee, Steve McNeff, Dominic Muldowney, Andrew Dixon and Stephen Warbeck. His influence radiated widely, not least to generations of teachers, who used his poems with children in schools."


-Michael Kustow

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