At the end of 2015 Virtual Migrants toured Continent Chop Chop, an innovative theatrical performance which is now the short film – the Continent Chop Chop documentary. This film exposes the complex process involved in making an authentic artist-activist statement that avoids being didactic, doesn’t pull punches, and steers away from the common trappings of climate change art and performance.
Here it is, please leave comments below or watch it directly on YouTube and leave comments there: www.youtube.com/watch?v=FAPKS3IobTk.
Background to the Continent Chop Chop Documentary
‘Continent Chop Chop’ is a touring transmedia production linking narratives of climate change to the broader issues of poverty, race and social justice. Using interwoven narratives portrayed through music, poetry, and projected imagery, it will ask:
Posted in C Words, Climate Justice, Global Justice, Green, Poetical Political, Poetry
Tagged Climate change, climate justice, Continent Chop Chop, Nnimmo Bassey, Poetry, Reparations, Virtual Migrants
Earlier this year Virtual Migrants were involved in a research project devised by the University of Manchester Centre for Criminology and Criminal Justice and a series of interactive drama-based workshops led by Theatre in Prisons and Probation to faciliate conversations about radicalism.
The project was devised as ‘a collaboration between young people, school staff, interdisciplinary researchers, and creative artists, that focuses on developing an inclusive and open discussion about how schools approach extremism that speaks to, and is led by, young people’.
The government’s Prevent strategy has been accused of being more damaging than enabling; acting as a mechanism of exclusion that represses rather than encourages conversation. It was fascinating to hear the views and frustrations of teachers and pupils in dealing with Prevent and Safeguarding legislation highlighting even more the need to “talk about this”.
Here’s the poem that resulted from these conversations:
Extremely Safe Radical Preventions
Who are ya?
Who are ya?
Who are ya?
Who is behind the mask?
Behind the hood?
Behind the veil? Continue reading
In December 2015 Voices that Shake! travelled to the alternative summit at COP 21 in Paris to offer solidarity to indigenous communities fighting for climate justice. This video features a speech extract delivered by Casey Camp-Horinek of the Ponca Nation and organiser with Indigenous Environmental Network recorded on Human Rights Day, 10th December 2015.
A transcript of the speech is below:
“…We are suffering from environmental genocide where I live. The Occupied Territory of the United States of Amerikkka that belongs to the indigenous nations of the Americas has long understood the policies that have come down.
We have had in the Concho Nation six treaties made, not one has been honoured. So when I hear of a treaty coming out of the UN I understand…
One of my relations told me – and we are all related, I want us to remember that – he said Continue reading
Posted in Climate Justice, Global Justice
Tagged Casey Camp-Horinek, climate justice, COP 21, Human Rights Day, IEN, indigenous, Paris, Ponca Nation, SHAKE!, Voices that Shake!
The 10th November marks 20 years since the execution of writer, poet and environmental activist Ken Saro-Wiwa and eight other Ogoni leaders for their protests against Shell oil destroying their land.
To mark the occasion Platform have shipped the Battle Bus (the Living Memorial to the Ogoni 9 designed by Sokari Douglas Camp), over to Nigeria in an act of solidarity with the Ogoni people.
At present the bus is still impounded by Nigerian customs – the head of which was on the tribunal that decided the fate of the Ogoni 9 back in 1995. Keep in touch with updates and solidarity with the Ogoni who have threatened to mobilize and cripple the economy unless the bus is released via #bus4ogoni9 and #Freethebus hashtags.
This poem was commissioned by Platform and forms part of a leaflet designed by graphic artist Jon Daniel and also featuring artwork from Alfreedo Jaar.
You can read a blog on the poem over on Platform’s website here.
Virtual Migrants collective has been working hard on a touring poetical musical digital mash-up theatrical production that connects austerity, refugees and climate justice. We’ve been in rigorous rehearsals upping our performance game in song, poetry, story-telling and even a lil slice of grime. Guided by the calm soul energy wisdom of Amanda Huxtable the show is now ready for the road.
Blurb about the show and tour dates are below.
A performance project by the Virtual Migrants collective.
Posted in Climate Justice, Global Justice, Poetical Political, Poetry
Tagged Aidan Jolly, Amanda Huxtable, austerity, Climate change, climate justice, Continent Chop Chop, Jaydev Mistry, Kooj Chuhan, Leeds, Leeds No Borders, Maya Chowdhry, Mazaher Rafshajani, migrants, migration, Nnimmo Bassey, poverty, refugees, Remember Oluwale, Reparations, The Write Stuff, Tracey Zengeni, transmedia, Virtual Migrants, Voices that Shake!, Zena Edwards
Here’s the performance from Zena Edwards, Selina Nwulu and myself that we put together to showcase our commissioned poems at Writing Climate Change at the Free Word Centre.
Our collection takes race and climate as its central theme. In looking globally at who is most affected by climate change, we see that those disproportionately affected are countries within the global south, people from the majority world who directly rely on the land or the sea for their food and survival.
We consider how climate change impacts diaspora communities and how ongoing inequality and historical legacies of colonialism have led to migration and dislocation from ancestral lands. The collection seeks to engage with dialogues about climate change that take into account the criminalisation of Black communities.
You can download these poems together with all the other commissions from writers Sarah Butler, Nick Hunt, Stevie Ronnie, Dan Simpson as a PDF here.
Check the Free Word blog to watch the other commissions and for a panel discussion.