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Celebrating children's voices


A special event celebrating children’s voices and the art of storytelling takes place at Leeds Beckett University in June.

children playing

The Story Makers Festival will include talks with artists and illustrators, the screening of a Story Makers Youth Group film and launch of the Nightmare Catcher children’s book.

There will also be workshops and performances from a wide range of acclaimed groups and organisations including Blah Blah Blah, Alive and Kicking, Royal Armouries and Story Makers Press.

Others involved include Tribe Arts, Peepal Tree Press, First Story, Interplay Theatre, Chol Theatre, The Little Bookshop and Story Makers Youth Group.

The event is being led by Lisa Stephenson, Course Leader MA Drama & Creative Writing in Education at the Carnegie School of Education at Leeds Beckett, and Ana Sanches de Arede, Story Makers publisher.

Lisa said the festival would explore the wider capabilities such as kindness, empathy and compassion that children develop through artistic engagement.

It would encourage collaborative work and community engagement, promote artistic research and development across professional disciplines, and promote Leeds as a creative and cultural centre to families and professionals.

“We aim to highlight and celebrate the necessity for children’s voices in stories through artistic outputs,” said Lisa.

“Celebrating the power of story helps us develop different ways of seeing ourselves and others.

“The Story Makers Festival brings together creative story makers from across the city: young people, parents, grandparents, educators, artists, mental health experts, museums, drama and theatre specialists, artists and authors.

“Artists will come from across the region to create, perform and share their stories as well as making stories together on the day using spoken word, creative writing, film, drama and theatre.

“Through imaginary adventures, we will explore the potential of stories to develop our capacity for kindness, empathy and compassion as well as cultivating positive wellbeing.”

The festival takes place between 9am-4.30pm on Saturday, 8 June 2019 at Leeds Beckett University’s Headingley campus.

Ticket are free for children aged 7-13 and parents, and £25 for professionals.

Click her to register and book your ticket.

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