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Wholly Communion (1965)

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A short film documenting what was referred to as "The International Poetry Incarnation". It was billed as Great Britain's first full-scale "happening", with the world's leading Beat poets ... See full summary »


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Credited cast:
Gregory Corso ...
Harry Fainlight ...
Lawrence Ferlinghetti ...
Michael Horovitz ...
Ernst Jandl ...
Christopher Logue ...
Adrian Mitchell ...
Alexander Trocchi ...
Simon Vinkenoog ...


A short film documenting what was referred to as "The International Poetry Incarnation". It was billed as Great Britain's first full-scale "happening", with the world's leading Beat poets together under one roof at the Royal Albert Hall on June 11, 1965, for an evening of near-hallucinatory revelry. It came to be seen as one of the cultural high points of the Swinging Sixties. Written by King Of Fuh

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Plot Keywords:

poetry | independent film | See All (2) »


Documentary | Short





Release Date:

16 December 2007 (France)  »

Also Known As:

Sainte communion  »

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Featured in Herostratus (1967) See more »

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a repetitious bore
22 August 2006 | by (Polotrov, Russia) – See all my reviews

"Wholly Communion," a 32-minute report on a recital by a gang of modern poets, mostly beatniks, in Albert Hall in London in 1965 is a useless narration. It is colorful and droll for about 10 minutes. Then it is a repetitious bore.

In Summer 1965, the Hall was filled to overflowing for the historic gathering of world voices which celebrated the renaissance of performance poetry and international times.

WHOLLY COMMUNION marks Whitehead's first breakthrough: a document of the historic convention at the Royal Albert Hall of English and American Beat poets. Starring Allen Ginsberg, Gregory Corso, Lawrence Ferlinghetti and more. "The Albert Hall poetry reading memorialized in Peter Whitehead's Wholly Communion brought the stars of US Beat poetry together with their English peers. As a reading it was chaotic - but as a cultural event it was incomparable. It was the climax of beatnik dreams, and the launch of the hippies. Seven thousand people arrived, a vast "alternative" constituency few could have imagined. The Albert Hall, booked for 450 pounds, had never seen anything like it. From it came the confidence to found the first "underground institutions", The Indica Gallery, The International Times and much more.

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