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pic by Tom Morezzo

Here We Stay

Scottish Refugee Council/Citizens Theatre

The Tron 20.6.13  ****

Just in the way that Riverdance resonates with the rhythm of the Irish Diaspora, the music in Here We Stay tells the stories of the men, women and children who have made their homes in Glasgow against staggering odds.

It starts with a sing-off between a Kurdish journalist and a woman from Zimbabwe, and for the next hour there is no let up in the songs, spoken word, music and dance that charts the rich and diverse life stories and reflections of refugees and local Glasgow residents

Part musical theatre, part documentary, Here We Stay stems from a project launched last year at the Citizens Theatre which saw a diverse group taking part in music, singing, storytelling and filmmaking workshops, culminating in this show.

This performance reunites this creative company from countries as diverse Iran, Egypt, Zimbabwe, Liberia, DR Congo, Zambia, Uganda, and features highlights from that show and also a brief behind the scenes documentary.

The most moving part of the evening is a young man rapping in English (quite a feat when it’s not your native tongue) wittily telling how he travelled across continents before reaching Glasgow, and how he stayed home for 600 days until hearing about the project at the Citizens.

We hear a lot about journeys these days, but this was so much more than a BGT, although there was no shortage of talent on stage.  Directors Neil Packham and Elly Goodman have created something magical and hopefully this is just the beginning of a series of entertaining and enlightening shows.

This appeared in The Ticket, Daily Record’s weekly entertainment section


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