Leicester is a creative melting pot boasting glorious diversity and an ambition for inspiring every neighbourhood and community using art and culture. ArtReach is the driving force behind dozens of European street art festivals bringing communities from different backgrounds together including the annual Journeys Festival International bringing together refugee artists and the asylum-seeking community into one artistic event celebrating lives and talent.

This year the festival will take a different direction and for the first time, the Leicester, Manchester and Portsmouth festival combines programming to bring 3 weeks of digital creativity, online content and world-class experiences  from 28 September to 18 October. The festival kicks off with This is Now Not for Me by Iman Tajik. A series of performative photographs responding to the Coronavirus pandemic and a chance to understand more about the refugee-seeking experience and the new understanding we all now have on restricted movement.

Let's take a whistle-stop tour and highlight just some of the events taking place throughout the 3 weeks.

Journey’s Live! Chapter 1

Join host, Eliab Million in an introduction to Chapter 1 acts. The exciting line up features Maracuya and Ghanian and Italian songstress Vivi. An evening of fabulous cultural music!

No Direction Home

Hands up if need a few laughs! That’s probably most of us right now, so why not join the virtual event No Direction Home. Enjoy pioneering stand-up comedy with performances from refugee and migrant backgrounds with incredible guest headliner Dane Baptiste.

If you want to be alive…read my lips

An inspiring performance film introducing Maral’s experience of deafness and jewellery making, her artistic practice and becoming a refugee. The film highlights her bone jewellery with demonstrations on how the jewellery is worn. Audiences must read Mural’s lip, giving an insight into her own experience as Deaf person.

Little Journey into Creativity

Join the fabulous Spark Arts for Stories from Home with writers Ines Sampaio, Santoshi Bobby Mann and Mellow Baku. Enjoy new stories read in the comfort of their own homes for everyone to enjoy in yours!

Down Upside

Another Story Collective are described on the Tate Modern website as ‘visual agitators'. Having worked together for 10 years they are pushing the boundaries of virtual reality, CGI and AI using cutting edge technologies to expand their story telling capabilities. Down Upside follows the tale of Bedd’s journey from Democratic Republic of Congo to the planet Mancunia told through spoken word poetry, soundscapes and 3D illustrations.

An evening of poetry with Inua Ellams

Live interactive poetry with poet, playwright and performer Inua Ellams. As audience members you’ll have the opportunity to suggest themes and topics to explore

There are plenty more events to keep you entertained throughout the 3 weeks. To find out more details visit Journey's Festival International

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