The inaugural Streatham Arts Festival is to be headlined by a panel event, featuring contributors to 2020 anthology Slay in Your Lane Presents: Loud Black Girls.
The event will feature a discussion between Abiola Oni, Siana Bangura and Temi Mwale, talking about the anthology, which was created by Yomi Adegoke and Elizabeth Uviebinené, the Slay in Your Lane brand creators, co-authors and editors. It will be chaired by Marcelle Mateki Akita, the producer of the Royal African Society’s Africa Writes festival at the British Library.
The festival, which has been co-ordinated by Hannah Taylor, will take place from 9th to 18th October, with associated events running throughout the month. Commenting on the need for the new festival, Taylor said: “It is a particularly challenging time for the creative industries, and it’s more important than ever to showcase, promote and support authors and creatives from all backgrounds. My mission in co-ordinating the festival was to bring such speakers together to create a programme that offers something interesting to everyone in the Streatham community; I hope it achieves this goal. We’re starting small this year as the pandemic has restricted us, but my hope is that we grow year on year to become the destination festival in south London. Watch this space!”
The local MP for Streatham, Bell Ribeiro-Addy, will open the festival on the evening of Friday 9th October at the Romantic Cello by Candlelight event in St Thomas’ Church, Telford Avenue, Streatham. She said: “I'm very excited to be attending Streatham Festival as the elected MP for the first time. Streatham Festival showcases the best of our area despite the restrictions and I'm sure this year will be no different. Thank you to everyone who has put so much effort into pulling this together.”
Further highlights include a drawing workshop by award-winning children’s author and illustrator Frann Preston-Gannon; a session on authors’ experiences of getting published, chaired by Taylor; and a conversation event with Hamed Amiri, author of The Boy with Two Hearts, chaired by The Bookseller Rising Star Hamza Jahanzeb.
A short story competition for primary-aged children – inspired by Waterstones Children’s Laureate, Cressida Cowell’s manifesto – is launching in schools and local youth groups during the festival, but is open to all primary-aged children.
Stand-up comedian, former "Match of the Day" presenter and Streatham resident Kevin Day will discuss his new book Who Are Ya? 92 Football Clubs and Why You Shouldn't Support Them (Bloomsbury), with fellow local comedian and Crystal Palace fan Chloe Petts, at The Rabbit Hole pub in Streatham.
The festival also includes a downloadable literature walking tour of Streatham to be narrated by a yet to be confirmed celebrity resident. Most of the events are scheduled to take place live in venues around Streatham, with online streaming options available.
Jo Blawat, chair of the festival said: “The Streatham Festival is needed now more than ever to help support the creative and artistic community and to bring something positive to Streatham and the wider south London area. We have a brilliant, jam-packed line-up of events so join us in October and help celebrate the arts in Streatham.”
Tickets can be booked online.
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