The premiere performance of Listen To Me: True Stories from Marginalised Children Around the World took place yesterday at the Unicorn theatre in front of a packed audience of opinion formers, policy makers, academics, celebrities and civil society.
I had read the script numerous times before seeing the production for the first time yesterday, yet I sat at the back of the theatre in tears as I watched the children’s lives being told by the actors. The children’s own words about the discrimination, violence and poverty that they face were so powerful.
The young actors were incredible. It was down to them and the wonderful script (based on the words and experiences of children around the world), and the direction from iceandfire theatre company that these children’s experiences were heard by so many people. The resilience of the children, in the face of injustice, really shone through.
The play was followed by an empassioned and informative panel session, with speeches from Adrian Lovett (Save the Children), Anna Feuchtwang (EveryChild) and a keynote speech from Marta Mauras, the newest member of the UN committee on the Rights of the Child. All three called on the audience to take forward the call of the play: to listen to the children and to act on what they had heard.
Schools and community groups around the world can download the script so that these children’s voices can continue to be heard in community centres and youth groups. We have to keep telling their stories so they continue to be heard.
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