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For the first time the work of two of the UK’s most prolific and revered poets comes together on stage at West Yorkshire Playhouse. A newly commissioned adaptation of Benjamin Zephaniah’s powerful novel Refugee Boy has been created by the Playhouse with award winning poet, playwright and performer Lemn Sissay.
Alem is fourteen, in London with his father on the best holiday he has ever had, only then the unthinkable happens, Alem awakes to find himself alone, a stranger in an unfamiliar country. Overnight he has become a refugee. As a violent civil war rages back home, Alem’s Ethiopian father and Eritrean mother make the heartbreaking decision to leave him in London, on his own but hopefully safe at last.
Guided by the Refugee Council and social services Alem’s new life brings with it new challenges from court hearings to children’s homes to life changing friendships and loving foster families. Amidst this turmoil Alem determines to take control, to transcend his refugee label, to become Alem Kelo - an African, a Peacemaker and no longer just a Refugee Boy.
There will be a post-show discussion on Wedneday 27th March
The 1:30pm performance on Thursday 21st March will be BSL interpreted
Audio-described performances will take place on Saturday 23rd March at 2:30pm and Tuesday 26th March at 7:45pm
A captioned performance will take place on Thursday 28th March at 7:45pm
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Venue: West Yorkshire Playhouse
LS2 7UP 53.798199, -1.534274
→ Leeds 11 min walk