Author Archives: chrisscahill

An Interview with Soup Regulars

We get a lot of feedback after our events, from people that attend, the people pitching and those getting involved and helping out. At a previous Soup event I had the chance to chat with a couple of regular soup attendees, Matt Brabner and Lisa Curne, and ask what they thought …

What first attracted you to Brighton Soup?

Matt: I can’t remember where I had read about it but my first introduction to Soup was actually reading about Stoneham Bakehouse [previous winners promoting baking as therapy] and their success; from there I read more about Brighton Soup, having been familiar with the concept hearing about Detroit Soup, and I just found the website and thought “right its only £4, lets go!”. Lisa came along and we brought a few other friends with us; it was the event at the Emmaus in the summer, just a gorgeous night. In fact I think it was the week after Brexit and everyone was a little fed up and we just came away thinking how lovely it was.

Lisa: Absolutely, just a really nice evening; great to see something good happening while everything else seemed a bit glum.

What do you enjoy most?

Matt: For me its the pitches; I mean even if its quite tough topics to listen to its all really positive which what they’re trying to achieve.

Lisa: Its really nice to know what’s going on in your community. As we mentioned before; in amongst the Brexit stuff it really restores my faith in people; there are extraordinary people out there doing amazing things for the good of other people.

There are extraordinary people out there doing amazing things for the good of other people”

Any really memorable pitches?

Lisa: The one that always sticks out in my mind is the Free university Brighton. I wondered how they were able to do something that wonderful for nothing haha. It was also a very different pitch in terms of goals and what they were trying to achieve.

Matt: What sticks out for me isn’t just the pitches but the fact that its not huge sums of money going to these people but about £400 odd; very much unlike the big national charities, and through that you get a real sense of how much they need this money and how much good it will do.

Now, important question, if you could be any soup what would you be?

Matt: Oh now I’m not sure; I’ve never been asked what soup I’d be haha. I certainly know what soup I like but I don’t know if that’s the soup I’d be. I’m a bit partial to Heinz with a nice bit of white toast. a good old Saturday afternoon comfort soup.

Great answer!

And you know what, I feel hungry now for a good serving of soup and toast too! Well thank you Matt and Lisa, I’m sure we’ll see you again soon!

If you think a Brighton Soup evening sounds like something for you then get yourself a ticket, we’d love to see you there!

That’s all from me, but have a great week everyone and stay hearty Brighton!

(Leek & Potato)

An Interview with Dare to be Charlie

Recently on BrightonSoup‘s radio show we had Charlie Savigar of Dare to be Charlie  on with our very own Mike Willis. Charlie is one of the brilliant artists we have had perform at a Soup event. So we took some time to chat to her…

willis-charlie img-20161120-wa0000

So how did you first get involved with Brighton Soup?

Charlie: So it was just over a year ago; I had just moved into the area and we were looking for places to play and came across BrightonSoup and noticed they did live music at their events. So we contacted you guys and ask if you’d be interested in having us come down and they were more than happy. To be honest we didn’t really know anything about Soup prior to that so it was all a bit unknown but we really enjoyed it.

So “Dare to be Charlie” how did the name come about?

Charlie: Well its actually a mix of mine and my husbands first names (Daren Callow).

And what style of music would you say it is?

Charlie: I would say country rock with a bit of a pop folky edge; its quite eclectic really as I have a bit of a classical background and I’m massively into country and americano. Darens into his old school classics like The Police but also electronica like Depeche Mode. So its an interesting blend when we’re together.

Well the first things that kind of hit you was that there was loads of people and it was a real kind of community vibe


So when you were at Soup what did you think of it, what struck you the most?

Charlie: Well the first thing that kind of hits you was that there was loads of people and it was a real kind of community vibe. I mean when we play we’re used to playing in places where people don’t necessarily listen and it doesn’t really bother us. Here; after the first song we thought to ourselves people are listening that’s really nice, after the second and third and people were still tuned in it was brilliant, haha such a novelty it felt fantastic. We really kind of connected to the audience; its such a unique concept as a public event one we’ve certainly never come across before. It was a really great night.

Do you think you’d come and play again?

Charlie: Well we did say we’d love to do it again but to be honest even just to come along and get involved as a bystander would be great.

Charlie, to round things off I have to ask this question, our readers must expect it by now, if you could be any soup what would you be? 1621775_589713117769841_283394068_n.jpg

Charlie: I feel like I want to say something exciting hah but you know what, my favourite is potato and leek, oh you know maybe I’ll say spicy chocolate with a dash of mint!

That’s almost a desert more than a soup! 

Well thank you Charlie from Dare to be Charlie.

You can check out Charlie’s facebook page, hear some tracks and find out where she’s playing next.

And if you’re thinking of performing at BrightonSoup or simply just want to find out more, then head over to; we’d love to see you there!

BrightonSoup is on the radio again tomorrow, for our fortnightly show Under The Influence in partnership with Mike Willis, so check it out, 1 – 3pm on 1BrightonFM.

That’s all from me this entry but have a great week everyone and don’t forget to stay hearty Brighton!

Chris (leek and potato)

Team Soup

Interview with a Soup-er Family

Salutations once again Soupateers!

It’s been a few weeks now since we took it to the Bridge and what an event it was! Whilst there I had the pleasure of speaking to Saffron and her two boys, Liam (16) and Dylan (14), who we noticed have been attending Soup events since the very beginning. I sat down to ask them how they first got involved and what kept them coming back for seconds…

So I take it you’ve been to nearly every event; amazing, how did you first find Soup?

Saffron: So I’d seen a short TV piece on Detroit soup, which was probably about two or three years ago, and thought that would be something really enjoyable and really good to participate in. From that I think Facebook started to show me Soup related bits and this event popped up. I thought to myself “I wonder if that’s anything like the Detroit Soup” and after looking into it saw that it looked the same – that would be really good to go. The first one we went to was in Portslade; we actually live in Worthing, so obviously not that far and I just said to the boys lets give this thing a go, get some soup – they do like to eat you see.

So have you chaps been to every Soup as well?

Liam: I think we’ve each missed one or two you know when we’ve been away or, various reasons like that but every opportunity that its on and we’re free, we’ll come along.

What would you say you enjoyed most about it?

Liam: Well I think first of all its great to see the difference in the amount of people attending then to now; I mean the first event I went to had maybe 30-50 people there whereas now we’re seeing 100 plus so its nice to see how its growing. Really though we like hearing the pitches; its a really great environment as all the local projects come and pitch for their ideas and its nice to know that when you make your vote its going to make a real difference to that community. Of course we’re also quite passionate about food; we enjoy eating it, *haha* and Dylan enjoys cooking.

Saffron: I think as well you could all too easily pick up a leaflet and read something about events like these or you could watch something on Facebook or Twitter and think “oh yeah that’s good” but when you are listening with the pitchers in front of you and you know that whole room is actively listening to the same person at the same time it means a lot more. Especially when you know you have to make a choice; “Where’s my £5 going to go towards?”, “Who’s the one that I really want to support?”. Lots of times I think it’s a really tough decision when you wish you could give your money to all of them. It’s just a really nice environment to be in; I mean, I bring along my sister-in-law now and my mums come a few times; but even if you came alone you can talk so easily to the people at the tables with an immediate topic to talk about – “Who are you going to vote for?”, “Which did you like best?” even “How’s your soup?”.

Being a budding chef Dylan, do you think you’ll ever make a soup for Soup?
Bit of a loaded question I know!

Dylan: Well you know I hadn’t thought about it like that *haha*, but it would be a nice thing to do to help out and support for sure. Like everyone said I just love coming along and being here, hearing the great pitchers and being a part of the communities.

“We don’t have a lot of access to things like this either because of time or opportunity so everything about it just feels right”


So you told us how you first found Soup but brings you back time and time again?

Saffron: Some of it is the little rituals you create you know; for example we’ve all got our different ways of voting; its quite funny really, someone always prefers to vote just as the last persons finished talking, some like to keep it secret and others get upset when their vote never gets the win!

Liam: We always inevitably get to talking about who voted for who just to make sure we didn’t all vote for someone different so it cancels each other out.

Saffron: But I think we come because we don’t have a lot of access to things like this either because of time or opportunity so everything about it just feels right. I think the team make it too; they’re all so friendly and professional without being over professional you know.

Liam: Yeah, we’ve never gone to a BrightonSoup and thought “Oh that one wasn’t very good, shall we go next time or not?”, its sort of like every time you expect it to be good it is good and you get home and you see when the next one is and plan ahead; we’ve never considered not coming or skipping one.

Is there anything you’d say you take away from it all, still, having been so many times?

Saffron: You know, I think sometimes we forget how privileged our lives are and you can live what you think is a very normal life tucked away from what’s happening in the rest of the world, even what’s going on in your own back garden. So something like this to bring it home and show you how lucky you are but also what you can give back with these things people are doing, it could be a choice for you in your life and open up your eyes to it. We can all do more than we do.

Very true indeed. Now a very silly question to end, Saffron; if you could be any soup what soup would you be?

Saffron: Minestrone I think, variety, a good bit of everything. Yeah minestrone.

Great classic choice, brilliant stuff;
thank you Saffron, Liam and Dylan. 


Great to hear about our soup events from a different perspective. If you have an interesting take on our events or have a soup story you want to share then get in touch here. We’d love to hear you.

That’s all from me for now, but have a great week and don’t forget to stay hearty Brighton!

(Leek & Potato)

Team Soup

An Interview with WOFFF – Nuala O’Sullivan

Salutations Soupateers!

This past week I had the pleasure of speaking with one of Brighton Soups past projects; Nuala O’Sullivan, founder of WOFFF – Women’s Over Fifty Film Festival, now in its second year. I wanted to find out how her experience with BrightonSoup had been and to learn a little more about her exciting Brighton Film Festival…

So tell me Nuala, how did you discover BrightonSoup?

I was introduced to London Soup by a friend of mine who knew I was starting up WOFFF, so I submitted an application even though I was pushing it; you know being a Brighton based film festival although I live in London. A year or so later I came across BrightonSoup and got in contact and it seemed like a much better fit and I got further than I did with the London application. I met Will and Karin and as soon as I did I thought “OK this is something I want to be involved with”.

I totally agree with you there, and what would you say inspired you to pitch?

Yes, again I have to put it back to Will and Karin; they made it clear that from the minute you get involved with BrightonSoup you’re one of the family. The biggest attraction to me was when they said you would get pitch training; because I think it’s really hard to sum #2016-07-01-191545-#3023-RBOLLup succinctly well and engagingly, what you’re about. I mean I certainly don’t have any trouble talking, I can talk the hind legs off a donkey and that’s fine sometimes, but other times less is more. So even when you imagine the worst case scenario where you make your pitch and you might not win on the night you still come away having had the training, so I could not see a downside.

Well quite, pitch training can be instrumental to a number of other opportunities right?

Yes exactly, and you know that’s the other thing; everything that happened at BrightonSoup was not contained within BrightonSoup. I mean its a life skill really; it’s all about connections.

Once the soup comes out everyone starts talking and that’s when it gets really exciting


What kind of connections did you make?

So we got tonnes of stuff; I mean we told a room full of people about our festival and got a lot of interest, people signed up to our monthly newsletter so now they’re part of our family, some even signed up as volunteers which we desperately needed.


And what about with the other projects; did you make any connections there?

You may remember our night was a very exciting night actually, as the overall donations pot was already sitting at around the £300 mark and then more and more kept getting added until we reached about £1,200 at the end. Ali from Free University Brighton had said, and I must stress this was before the results even got announced, that we should split the money four ways amongst all the projects. Lo and behold Free Uni Brighton came up and we had all said don’t be daft as we were already getting a share in £300 of that £1,200 total but she wouldn’t hear it. So in the end everybody that night got £300 which is kind of what everyone was wishing for. I mean I was happy already just with the pitch training, getting to speak to a room full of people and get those volunteers, but to walk away with £300 was truly amazing.

I think it really is wonderful, its got a sort of Dragons Den format but its really all about recognising your neighbours which we don’t do enough of.

Well yes, but that’s the thing, if it really was a Dragons Den I would get up, pitch and then somebody would ask me a few questions and then that would be the end of it. But the magical bit of this happens after that when you go round the room and talk to people; I mean the pitch can be a bit of a lecture situation but once the soup comes out everyone starts talking and that’s when it gets really exciting.

Its a very infectious atmosphere! Now I wanted to ask you more about WOFFF; I gather you have a festival coming up in October, can you tell us a little about that?

So Saturday the 1st and Sunday the 2nd of October we’re going to be showcasing 44 short films, an all female panel event and a workshop all within the BMECP (Black and Minority Ethnic Community Partnership) building situated just 5 minutes from Brighton station, so really central. The 44 films were chosen from over 100 submissions and the premise of WOFFF is that each short film must either have a woman over 50 at the heart of the piece on screen; they must really be driving the action, or have a woman behind the camera in one of the core roles of writer, director or producer. So what that means is that its a really open medium; you as a young man could make a movie with a story centred around an older woman or indeed that older woman could make a documentary about you for example.

And what kind of submissions have you had?

screen-shot-2016-09-15-at-11-39-19These films have come from all around the world too from places as far away as New Zealand, Bangladesh, Canada, Hong Kong, Nigeria just to name a few, and we created four categories: drama, documentary, animation and experimental. So within those genres we have films about flying dinosaurs, films about dancing, topics like life after death and in one, some talking furniture.

I’m sure I’ve seen that one before… Certainly something for everyone! It really does emphasise the point I think you’re making here that its all about giving those women over 50 a chance.

Exactly, women over 50 in the film industry are really poorly represented and under appreciated as both film makers and film protagonists. The reason I started WOFFF was because I wrote a short film myself and entered it into a lot of film festivals before anyone took any notice of it. I had always had a keen interest in film festivals and after entering a piece I started to view them in a different light and noticed that a lot of the people who ran and entered these festivals were younger men; after doing a bit of digging I found that there was only one that actually focused on the work of older women, held in Japan. It’s called the Senior Women’s Film Festival. I got in contact with them and it turned out that the woman who run it was previously a student here at Brighton university, such a small world; so naturally we like to think of ourselves as sister festivals.

Wow, that’s amazing! Now I’m sorry to say but I have to wrap things up but I’d like to ask you one last question; if you could be any soup, what soup would you be?

I think I would be something like borscht; quite small and sturdy, hearty yes. Definitely borscht, haha.

An excellent choice; thank you Nuala. 


They say that good soup is one of the prime ingredients of good living, well I say it seems that a good BrightonSoup certainly makes all the difference.

Now if you want to attend the upcoming WOFFF festival on the 1st and 2nd of October details can be found at and tickets can be bought from You can also follow them on twitter @WO50FF, FaceBook Instagram.

Of course the next BrightonSoup event is soon upon us coming this Friday on the 23rd of September at The Bridge in Moulscoomb! So see you there!

Well that’s all from me this entry, hope you;re having a great week everyone and don’t forget to stay hearty Brighton!

(Leek & Potato)

Team Soup