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Kate Barden

writer and performer


A Sea-swimming Storyteller

Kate has lived in Cornwall all her life, with a few trips away now and again for University and work. In between being a teacher, youth worker and careers adviser for young people living in foster care, Kate performs and writes as often as she can. She has had a short story published in an anthology of Cornish tales, and poetry published both online and in a book for The Compassionate Friends. She has co-written, directed and performed in various pieces of theatre with her company, Blabbermouth, who have toured Cornwall and performed at the Edinburgh Fringe. Kate performs regularly with Cornish companies, having played amongst others, Kate in Taming of the Shrew, Titania in A Midsummer Night’s Dream and the second Mrs De Winter in Rebecca. She was involved with the Shakespeare Nation project with the Hall for Cornwall and the RSC, Twelfth Night with Carnon Downs Drama Group, and she is writing spoken word pieces for performance with the Writers Block. She has also contributed to a collaborative poetry anthology based on women who sea-swim in Cornwall. Kate is Nanny to Amelie Violet who is nearly 10; she sings in an 80s covers band, collects tattoos, and rides pillion on a Harley.

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"If we did all the things we are capable of, we would literally astound ourselves"

Thomas Edison

'Some things just shouldn't.'

A book of poems about the shit things that can happen.

This book isn't some sort of spiritual guide, and it DEFINITELY ISN'T going to say 'things happen for a reason' (if anyone ever says that, walk away, quickly...they are bad people to have around). This is a collection of poems about some shit things, some of which happened to me and some which happened to my dear friends and family. It is my hope that one of them, or at least a line or a few words, will go a tiny way towards acknowledging your pain and saying, 'I hear you'.


I write short stories, poems, plays and sketches. I find it fascinating being human and I believe that the best stories come from everyday interactions and events. I write about the things we all face; those we know are coming and those that hit us like the unexpected broadside slap from a wave. Usually, the harder things that hurt. But sometimes the funny things as well...

For Hope, published in The Compassionate Friends Book, Forget-Me-Not Poems


Pharoah in Origo Mundi: the creation of the world, play 1 of The Ordinlia performed in St. Just, Cornwall Sept 2021.

Performing and writing

Edna in Up and Away, written and performed by Blabbermouth Theatre.


Contribution to the collection of poems for The Compassionate Friends.


Selected to represent Cornwall with 11 other performers for RSC Henry VI: Rebellion, April/May 2022


'Truth and courage aren't always comfortable, but they're never weakness' - Brene Brown

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writing and performing as part of this magical event in four towns across Cornwall...


Morvoren; the poetry of sea-swimming and Mordardh: surf poetry

workshops and performances.

Mordardh: surf poetry

written after interviewing surfers across Cornwall.

Carnon Downs Drama Group

performing in Twelfth Night at
The Minack Theatre


'Just have a go...what's the worst that can happen...?' Kirk Barden (dad)

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Performing and writing

Daisy in Daisy and Johnny, written and performed by Blabbermouth Theatre.


Morvoren: a collection of poems about women who swim in cold water.


A short story, 'Look Up'; for an anthology, 'Secret and Hidden' from Cornwall Writers.

Performing and writing

The launch of Merci Ditch, a small but well-formed company, writing, reading and performing their own work.

Get in Touch

If I'm out with Harmony or in the sea, I'll get back to you asap.

Newlyn, Cornwall


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