Posted on June 19, 2012 / Comments Off / Show post tags
Homeless people from around the world will be involved in a special concert at the London Royal Opera House.
The event, ‘With One Voice’, is part of the London 2012 Festival and will give 300 participants the chance to showcase their talent. It will be the first time in history that homeless people have been given an official platform at celebrations for an Olympic and Paralympic Games. It will take place in London Royal Opera House on July 2.
‘I’m delighted that we’re able to make available the Royal Opera House for this special event, celebrating the creativity, participation and achievement of people who, for whatever reason, have experienced homelessness and all the hardship that it brings,” said Tony Hall, chief executive of the Royal Opera House. “We see very regularly, both here in the theatre and through our community work, the power that the arts have to uplift, inspire and transform people’s lives, and it’s wonderful to be able to celebrate the work of Streetwise Opera and the other partners in this way.”
Acts include Svetlana and Alina, a mother and daughter vocal duet from Romania; Merger, a hip-hop collective from Bristol; former homeless pianist/singer Rudi Richardson, who founded the London homeless charity Streetlytes; Veteran Voices, a group of ex-army poets from Aldershot; and other established arts and homeless groups, such as Cardboard Citizens, the Choir with No Name, Streetwise Opera and Open Cinema.
The event will also include screenings of films such as Marko, a documentary about four homeless men all called Marko, and The Secret, a light-hearted short about a young man who is struggling to tell his girlfriend he lives in a hostel.
Over 100 applications were submitted from homeless organisations and individuals from across the world. An independent selection panel made up of representatives from the homeless, arts and film worlds selected 50 performance acts and short films. The cabaret-style event will be informal, with multiple stages for ensembles, acoustic performance and film screenings.
An Action Zone will be set up to invite members of the public to have their say about homelessness and the whole event will be streamed live on the internet co-ordinated by Open Cinema, which works with homeless people using film.
“The Olympic and Paralympic Games offer a unique platform to celebrate a vast range of talents. I am proud that for the first time this will include those who have been homeless at some point in their lives. As we strive to end rough sleeping in London, it is important that we recognise and champion the creativity of those who have experienced life on the streets, which is precisely what Streetwise Opera and its fantastic programme of events seeks to do,” said London mayor Boris Johnson. © INSP / www.streetnewsservice.org