Hear the possibility; Words have the power to set us free.
"A revelation... material and delivery were utterly brilliant."
Scriptsuff Poetry at The Leamington Poetry Festival
"A revelation... material and delivery were utterly brilliant."
Scriptsuff Poetry at The Leamington Poetry Festival
Dave Bowden, founder of Word Guerrilla, began writing poetry because his dreams told him to...true story! As a former primary school headteacher and educator Dave understands the importance of empowering people with language and words; through the power of words, World Guerrilla seeks to enable people of all ages to become inspired, to become thinkers and to become individuals.
Based in Northamptonshire, Word Guerrilla can deliver its brand of spoken word poetry across the country, utilising beatboxing, live looping and multi-instrumentalism. Word Guerrilla can also deliver workshops to a variety of different educational settings, workplaces and events with a key focus on developing the confidence in people to write and be creative, promoting engagement, productivity and wellbeing.
"Not just a breath of fresh air but more of a whirlwind… a fireball of talent... of musicality, beat boxing, rapping, looping expertise, a wordplay juggler... It was sleight of hand but verbal! He stormed in… delivered an amazing set that left us all wound up, winded, elated… and wanting more… Come back Dave… we haven’t finished clapping yet!"
Chris Slade of Messrs AP & Pickering Poets & Players
“The Word Guerilla opens up poetry, performance and the power of language with humour, sensitivity, openness and compassion; he embodies the positivity and power of language in a way I’ve not seen before. His performance to our school community – a secondary school for students with ASC and social, emotional and mental health needs – was revolutionary. Students left his performance excited about words, rhythm and confidence. Dave was sensitive to our students needs and delivered a performance that was thought provoking, entrancing and captivated my students’ imaginations – no easy task. Within minutes of the performance ending, students were inspired to dance, speak and write their own poetry…If you want to switch students on to the power of language and tap into their imaginations, The Word Guerilla is the way to do it.”
Hannah Smart, Headteacher, ACE Tiverton Special School, Devon
"Beats,poetry, rap, singing, laughter tears - all delivered with pinpoint precision by the magical Word Guerrilla."
Sammy Nour , Some- Antics
"David is an excellent performer of his work. Lively and animated. Not a word out of place. A stand-up, stand-out poet."
Poets, Prattlers, and Pandemonialists- Wolverhampton Literature Festival
David is a word wizard, a lyrical acrobat and a profound performer. In assembly, he mesmerised our children with his animal rap, he engaged us to join in with his pirate song, and he had us in stitches with his Granny poem. He worked with every class over the course of the day and consistently had the children in the palm of his hand. They reached a deep flow state of enjoyment, engagement and achievement.
After school, David then delivered an inspiring CPD session for our teachers. It was informative, interesting and enjoyable. It is the first step on the road to developing a new approach to the teaching of poetry writing. We’re already looking forward to next year!
If you’re on the fence about booking David - get off it and get it in the diary! I encourage, urge and implore you to get David into your school.
Your children and staff deserve it.
Simon Bolger, Headteacher, Thomas Johnson Lower School, Bedfordshire
The children were mesmerised as the Word Guerrilla carried out his stand-up display of clever poetry, incorporating beat boxing, rapping and looping. Children and adults didn’t stop laughing and clapping during his performance. Excited, wowed, elated are just some of the words to describe how he left us all feeling. It certainly did not stop there…totally engaged, enthralled and inspired by his clever use of words, the older children went on to create some of their own poetry, with the help of the Word Guerrilla of course. TWG’s way with words really did set the children free, and we can’t wait for his next visit!
Carmel Rossiter, Longlands Primary School, Bexley, London
"As a large secondary school, we wanted to book someone for World Book Day 2022 who would make a real impact on as many of our students as possible. The challenge for David was to deliver a full day of year group performances and poetry workshops; we made sure this included students from all year groups from 7 to 11.
As the Word Guerrilla, David put on a captivating show – his wit, energy and maverick persona was perfectly pitched for the audience. He worked his magic on our hard-to-reach students who might typically disengage from poetry and created such a buzz of positivity about making poems. David really helped unlock the potential of our students, all the while being effortlessly entertaining and allowing the school to have a thoroughly lovely World Book Day.
If it’s not already apparent, we are delighted to have booked David and whole-heartedly recommend to other schools!"
Anna Morton, Librarian, The Warriner School, Banbury
"The 'Word Guerrilla' came into Cosgrove Village Primary School to run an afternoon session with children from two schools who have recently formed a partnership. Dave did an amazing 30 minute performance for the children which had them completely awestruck. His set included audience participation, sounds and loops and even beatboxing. It really captivated the children and made them see that poetry and expressing yourself through word was on point and powerful.
He then spent an hour running a workshop for our older children around the values and identities of the two schools. They talked about some shared values and then had some rhyming battles around their ideas. In an age where belonging is such a key concept, the discussion and participation that this enabled with the children was amazing. They were able to talk about what was important to them and the values that they felt gave the schools their identities. What Dave achieved in an hour with them was fantastic. We wished he could stay for longer.
I would really recommend getting the Word Guerrilla into your school. The motivation, particularly amongst some of the more reluctant boys to get some rhyming battles written and the discussion it promoted, was incredible.
Thank you Word Guerrilla – we will see you again soon!!"
Jude Busari , Executive Head Teacher, Ashton CEVC Primary School and Cosgrove Village Primary School, Northamptonshire
"The 'Word Guerrilla' created an excited buzz as he visited each class in The Abbey Primary School. His enthusiastic and humorous presentational skills had the children's attention captured immediately! The mix of poetry performance and beat boxing certainly inspired many of our children. David performed poetry based on current relevant issues including well being and mental health, something we have been working on in our school. He worked on different poetry forms with each year group and each session was perfectly planned so that each child had produced a piece of poetry. In our year group we worked on Blackout Poetry. The sense of achievement was astounding! The activity worked with all abilities and especially reached those reluctant boy writers. I would thoroughly recommend a visit from the Word Guerrilla in your school. If you asked any of our children they would have him back tomorrow! Thank you! We hope to see you again soon!"
Jenny Monk, English Lead, The Abbey Primary School, Northamptonshire
"From the minute David arrived at our school there was an immediate buzz. The day started with an assembly which saw the children giggling, dancing and generally loving life! Throughout the day David worked with all classes from Year 1-6 to aid them creating their own poems, including performances too. David was proactive at communicating with me before the visit and listened to everything we wanted to achieve throughout the day, resulting in everyone creating a poem about a value. Watching other classes' performances about their value was such a proud moment and to think they created them within 40 minutes is amazing…If you are thinking of booking David for your school- DO IT!"
Denise Horton, English Lead, King's Cliffe Endowed Primary School, Northamptonshire
"Wow!! David Bowden, aka Word Guerrilla, is a must for any school. David is professional, unique, approachable, as well as extremely talented in his field. His performances to the school were captivating and had every child physically moving to the beat of his raps with huge smiles upon their faces. The workshops were inspirational and put a completely different slant on poetry for the children. All the staff thoroughly enjoyed the staff meeting he provided at the end of the day too. An inspiring, talented poet who captivates any age! Thank you again Word Guerrilla! "
Danielle Palmer, English Lead, Oxley Primary School, Leicestershire
We recently had David in our school to work with some of our older students for World Book day. Our students all have learning difficulties which in itself makes learning difficult but can also lead them to lack confidence and trust in new people. David engaged all of them and pitched the activities at just the right level to keep their interest. He won their trust and many of them, who often find it hard to engage, joined in and even performed their raps in front of peers and staff. He started the day with a great performance in the hall, which engaged the students and then went on to lead workshops on spoken poetry. I would thoroughly recommend him to anyone wanting to enthuse young people with poetry and self expression. We would live to invite him back!
Sarah Jones, Head of English, Sidestrand Hall School , Norfolk
Whatever the context, Word Guerrilla can deliver a poetry performance or workshop to suit the needs or intended outcomes of the audience.
Early Years, primary and secondary education, corporate functions, festivals and events: The content of Word Guerrilla- performance and workshop- is designed to be accessible to everyone. All people, regardless of age or background, can become inspired, to become thinkers, to become individuals, to write, to stand up, to speak out and to feel proud.
Whatever your performance or workshop needs, Word Guerrilla will help you and your audience to discover or re-affirm a love of language and its power.
"Word Guerrilla delivered an inspiring, thought provoking and, most importantly, a truly entertaining workshop at our college. Pupils laughed, listened and shouted out to performance poetry on topics relevant to them such as the environment, well-being and social media, whilst all along being encouraged to explore their own poetic talents.
Equipped with his sunglasses, hipster hat and loop peddle, our pupils loved every second of this excellent day. Highly recommended – could really relate to our kids"
Literacy Co-ordinator, St Andrew’s College.
Have questions? Want to book a performance or workshop in your organisation? Want to get in touch and collaborate on an idea you have?
Reach out to YOUR NEW FAVOURITE POET via the relevant booking link and let's make it happen.
"Our Key Stage Two children were entertained from the minute they entered the hall. David spoke to the children about his passion for poetry and the positive effect it has had on his life...then performed several of his own poems, using his loop machine and guitar to add depth and rhythm. The children were encouraged to join in and engage in the performance throughout.They were captivated!
Following the thirty-minute performance, Year 6 were treated to a poetry workshop, whereby they tore pages out of old books to create their own blackout poem. This was hugely engaging for our boys, in particular; especially as within the hour they had had success in creating their own piece to perform.
I cannot recommend a poetry session with David Bowden highly enough. The whole school was buzzing – he was the talk of our social media that evening, with children sharing his YouTube channel at home.
His presence filled the room and the children were truly engaged throughout. "
Pattishall CE Primary School