Sheffield festival will attempt to bring hope to people all over the world by moving celebrations online

A Sheffield arts festival which brings people from all over the world together, is heading online this year, with a belief that it can offer ‘hope in this tough time’.

By Lisa Wong
Thursday, 16th April 2020, 9:12 am
Updated Thursday, 16th April 2020, 9:14 am

Migration Matters Festival - which will have been running for five years this year - seeks to celebrate the positive impact of migration through theatre, music, film, dance, spoken word, academic talks, and food.

Due to the current lock down situation, the team has decided to save this year’s plans for next year but will still host a series of events online this June.

A spokesperson from Migration Matters Festival, said: “We feel it's important that during these difficult and uncertain times that, as a festival, we are delivering a programme which champions artists and organisations from refugee, migrant and British backgrounds, whose work celebrates migration and sanctuary, so we will be postponing our original programme to 2021 and curating our 2020 festival online and digitally.”

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Sam Holland and Tchiyiwe - the organisers of Migration Matters.

Migration Matters Festival 2019 saw many different events across the city, with performers representing about 70 countries.

Acts who took to the stage last year included poet and spoken word artist Benjamin Zephaniah and his band The Revolutionary Minds, Lowkey, a British Iraqi rapper and activist, and Nikesh Shukla, writer and editor of the award-winning The Good Immigrant.

This year will see live streamed music and theatre performances, in conversations events, link ups with other Refugee Week festivals, international partnerships, online workshops, radio and podcasting sessions, community events in collaboration with Ignite Imaginations and talks with the University of Sheffield.

As with previous years, the festival is hoping to be accessible to as many people as possible and donations will be going to charities which support the refugee and asylum seeker communities in the City of Sanctuary, Sheffield.

The charities due to benefit will be revealed shortly.

Migration Matters Festival will take place from June 15 to 20, 2020.

Plans for the festival are still being discussed and updates can be found on the Facebook page or via the website here.

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