Manchester International Festival has revealed details of its first MIF21 event. Entitled The Walk, it promises to tell the story of displacement through a giant living artwork which will travel from Gaziantep in Turkey to Manchester City Centre. Its arrival will be celebrated on Sunday 4 July 2021 as part of the festival’s opening weekend, forming part of a large out-door event in the centre of town.

The project has been devised in collaboration with renowned theatre company Good Chance, who created the critically-acclaimed show The Jungle, and the expert craftspeople at Handspring Puppet Company who were responsible for bringing the world-famous War Horse to life. Together they’ve created Little Amal – a 3.5 metre tall puppet which will act as an emblem for the millions of displaced refugees and children separated from their families. Showcasing the timely message of ‘Don’t forget about us’, Little Amal will travel 8,000km throughout Turkey, Italy, Greece, France, Switzerland, Germany and Belgium before arriving in the UK, with its arrival in each city marked by a range of celebrations – from busy street parades to intimate community events.

A range of community-led creative engagement activities will be scheduled in the lead up to Little Amal’s arrival into Manchester, itself a city that has long-welcomed refugee and migrant communities and houses the highest concentration of dispersed asylum seekers outside of London. Manchester International Festival will take place from Thursday 1 to Sunday 18 July 2021. For further information, visit the Manchester International Festival website.

Thu 1 Jul - Sun 18 Jul, Manchester International Festival,
Various locations around Manchester
Simon Bland
Published on:
Wed 7 Oct 2020