Arts Council England
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Storytelling around the world with Journeys Festival International

Journeys Festival International (JFI) which explores the refugee experience through creativity, usually takes place in Leicester, Manchester and Portsmouth – but for 2020 will be entirely online.

As part of its 21-day programme starting this week, JFI has announced four new commissions and a film programme. These range from international projects exploring an intergalactic journey through the UK’s immigration system, to how to engage politically when you don't have access to sound. 

This year, also for the first time, the three festivals will combine programming with work including interactive family activities, a series of conversations with Somali-British activist and writer, Magid Magid, exhibitions and performances.

A person in a yellow baseball cap and gold medallion chains stands in front of block of flats

The festival produced by ArtReach even hosts cook-along sessions in Global Kitchen, teaching audience’s new dishes from around the world, alongside podcasts, animations, interactive art installations and live comedy - for people to enjoy from the comfort of home.

Peter Knott, Midlands Area Director for Arts Council England, yesterday said:

“Over the last six months, we’ve seen creatives and organisations adapting their work to safely reach audiences in their living rooms all over the world using digital technology.

“Storytelling has the power to bring us together, illuminate the unknown and create space for reflection and conversations and we look forward to seeing where this year’s Journeys Festival will take us.”

Three people stand talking in a kitchen

Maddie Smart, Artistic Director for JFI yesterday said:

“The heart of Journeys Festival International is stories, not always in the traditional sense, but always stories. They shine a light on new cultures, languages and perspectives; they help us understand ourselves and those around us, they make us think bigger, become more open and shape how we see the world.

“So even though we can’t share a cup of tea, or sit shoulder to shoulder in a darkened theatre or cinema, we hope people will join us online to experience 21 days of the stories, voices, cultures and rhythms of 52 artists from over 24 different nations.  Come and learn, celebrate, and reminisce with us.”

See the full line-up for this year’s Journeys Festival International


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