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An invitation from Sarah Chew, writer, director and artistic director of intercultural theatre hub Critical Mass:

Hello. My name is Sarah, and I'm a theatre artist who has always looked for borders I can mess around with. National borders. Continental borders. Borders of gender, race, class, disability, faith, life choices. Mostly I have been lucky - mostly, the messing around has been kind, exciting and illuminating. But it feels that times are changing. And it feels we need to do something about it.

As artists, we are on a journey without maps. The only maps we have are the maps we draw communally as we learn and grow. 

But following Brexit, Trump's travel bans and deportations, the global rise of the far Right, those maps are developing ever more hard lines. Lines we cannot cross, however carefully we build our maps.

Brexit is going to have a direct and negative effect on British artists' collaborations and personal relationships.

The sudden and shocking withdrawal of freedom of movement recently enforced by the US Government was horrific for those affected, and a reminder to all of us all that freedom of movement is not a right we can rely upon. 

The combination of austerity policies, and the rise of far-right Nationalism, in the UK and elsewhere, have made the ideological case for publicly funded international collaborations harder to make. 

What are we going to do to keep international intercultural collaboration and communication alive?

What are we going to do to collaborate digitally if physical journeys become more challenging?

What are we going to do to persuade the public that international and intercultural collaboration is important for artistic development but also for cultural communication and harmony?

How can we pool our dwindling resources to keep as many as possible of the projects and conversations going?

If we can't knock down some walls, can we build some bridges? 

Or helicopters? 

Or friendly dragons?

Can we think of any advantages to hardening borders? Do you disagree with me? Let’s explore those borders too.

Please bring your own questions, ideas, issues, dreams and boundaries to this event, where you set the agenda and every voice gets heard. 

See you there! x Sarah

This event is fully wheelchair-accessible. Detailed transport information can be found here. If you require any additional support to access this event, for example, BSL interpreters, please let us know on the booking form, by emailing [email protected] or by calling 020 7240 4556. General information about access at all our events can be found here.

Booking for this event has now closed.