Open mic night returns to Prince of Wales venue

The mental health open mic night "Unfiltered" will take place at gringos on 7 October 

The mental health open mic night "Unfiltered" will take place at gringos on 7 October - Credit: Ren Bezant

An open mic night which is needed "now more than ever" is set to return to the city. 

Perspective Projects has relaunched its Unfiltered series. 

The charity uses creativity to highlight issues around mental health and battle stigmas. 

Ren Bezant, the organiser of the event in Norwich said: “The organisation has run one in London before, but I felt the need for one in Norwich.” 

Music, comedy, poetry and spoken word are among the creative performances you can expect to see. 

Music, comedy, poetry and spoken word are among the creative performances you can expect to see. - Credit: Ren Bezant

The first of the events in the Fine City ran in February 2020 “and it was a huge success,” said Ren.  


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But of course, the impending doom of the pandemic put a halt to all plans for the next instalment of the event.  

Until now. 

Performers and audience very much enjoyed the last installment back in Feb 2020

Performers and audience very much enjoyed the last installment back in 2020 - Credit: Ren Bezant

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“Finally! We have waited long enough!” Ren added.

The event will be hosted at Gringos bar in the Prince of Wales Road. 

Ren is hopeful that “unfiltered” gets a similar response to that of the one she hosted in February.  

Offering many different creative performances such as poetry, spoken word, music and comedy, this is a night set to ensure nobody feels alone.  

She added: “Norwich offered an overwhelming feeling of support and acceptance. 

“People really felt like they could get up and express themselves, that's literally all I want from a mental health focused open mic.” 

She went on that nobody should feel pressured to talk about their own experiences of mental health, but hopes by listening to others it will help in some way.  

Ren Bezant is the host and organiser of the Norwich night. 

Ren Bezant is the host and organiser of the Norwich night. - Credit: Ren Bezant

Ren hopes to see many new faces for the event, with the hope of everyone feeling “included and valid.” 

She added: “People are free to do as much or as little as they would like, this is not a high pressure event, have a nice time and make some friends.” 

She said that she understands it’s not everyone's cup of tea: “I used to be so anxious about these sorts of events. 

“I just feel these events are needed now more than ever.” 

Unfiltered will take place at Gringos on Thursday, October 7 at 7pm.  

Tickets are £3 on the door.  

For more information, or to book a slot email ren@theperspective.co.uk 

This will be the second installment of the event. 

This will be the second installment of the event. - Credit: Ren Bezant

  • Norwich poet F.L. Mackenzie has written this poem to give readers an idea of the sort of work being shared at the event:

Salt Water  

My pain is ocean waves 

I am the shoreline sand  

I let it wash over me  

I accept it moving me and  

Breaking me and reshaping me  

But I never waiver  

I remain  

It hurts, though  

To be so steadfast under  

Such relentless assault  

Salt water burns before it  

Heals and the fires of T 

his water I seek out  

Sometimes feel too much  

For me to take as they  

Break me down into  

The tiniest of pieces  

So, let me go with the tide  

Let me drown out there  

Only to be brought back in  

Home, again, on the backs  

Of the same waves that broke me 

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