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George the Poet returns with award-winning podcast

BACK AT IT: George the Poet

THE SECOND series of the award winning Have You Heard George’s Podcast? by George the Poet, comes to BBC Sounds this autumn.

The podcast is a uniquely creative mix of observations, provocations, drama, poetry, and music. At this year’s British Podcast Awards it won four gold awards, two silver and Podcast of the Year.

Through spoken word, documentary narration and soundscaping, Have You Heard George’s Podcast? explores issues as wide-ranging and powerful as reflections on the Grenfell Tower tragedy, the role of family, education and music for disadvantaged young people, the Libyan slave trade, and the relationship between communities and law enforcers.

In the second series of the podcast, George will continue his fusion of music and storytelling to deliver a fresh take on inner-city life, exploring themes from gentrification to youth violence through the central thread of his personal journey.

All of the second series - 10 episodes - will be made available in one go on BBC Sounds in November for listeners who want to indulge in binge listening, with episodes released weekly on other platforms. Series two of Have You Heard George’s Podcast? will also be broadcast on Radio 4 and 1Xtra.

Ahead of the second series, George the Poet said: “We began Have You Heard George’s Podcast? as a way to have creative dialogue about the future of our communities, to end up not just in people’s ears but in their minds too.

"By joining with BBC Sounds, Radio 4 and 1Xtra I can bring these stories and perspectives to an even wider audience, encouraging new conversations and helping to educate through the experiential. My work creates a bridge across the disjunct between people, bringing together the streets and the intelligentsia at the same time.

“Series one was a re-introduction. Series two is a mission statement. I want you to see the potential of storytelling for community development. I've been thinking about this for a long time, I've got a lot to say.”

In addition Radio 4 will broadcast a special programme with George the Poet, recorded in the BBC’s Radio Theatre in front of an audience. The one-off show will see George picking up on themes raised in the first series as he sets out to explain why rap music might be able to play more of an important role in education than we think. The programme will include special guests, live performances and George answering questions from the audience.

Jason Phipps, Commissioning Editor for Podcasts on BBC Sounds, commented: “George Mpanga’s entry into the world of podcasting is a high water mark in creativity and storytelling in the UK and globally. His collaboration with Paul Carter, aka Benbrick, has shifted all our expectations about what podcasting can do in terms of narrative ambition and exploits the musicality of the spoken word.

"We want to support the best in UK podcasting and I’m delighted we’re bringing George’s unique podcast to BBC listeners who might not yet have discovered it. His passion to educate and entice the imagination are at the heart of George's podcast and fit perfectly with our ambition for BBC Sounds.”

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