Tag: Arts Council England

Liverpool Arab Arts Festival is delighted to be part of Arts Council England’s Investment Programme 2023-26, which was announced today.

Thank you to Arts Council England for their ongoing support of our work and our future growth plans as a National Portfolio Organisation. Our mission remains the same, to be a vibrant international platform for Arab arts and culture in the North of England.

We are proud to work in a vibrant cultural city, alongside our friends, colleagues and peers who work everyday to share the stories of those whose voices are not often heard.

Liverpool Arab Arts Festival delivers arts events and education projects throughout the year, including our Cultural Education Programme.

We have a new podcast series, Artists Ideas Now, supported by The Space and Arts Council England with funding from the National Lottery launching next week. Zackerea Bakir‘s exhibition ‘Shwaya, Shwaya’ is at Output Gallery until Sunday. Camille Maalawy’s Arabic Song Workshop returns to Liverpool on 26 November.

We are thrilled to confirm that our annual festival will return 6 – 16 July 2023, featuring the best UK and international Arab artists and creatives. Our artist call out will be released in the coming weeks.

For more information regarding the Investment Programme, please visit: www.artscouncil.org.uk/investment23

Image: Hawiyya Dance Company and El-Funoun PDT perform at Family Day 2022. Photo by Andrew AB Photography

Daraa Tribes shot

We’re proud to be featured as a case study in Arts Council England’s Environmental Responsibility Annual Report 2020-21, a publication which presents National Portfolio Organisations (NPO) environmental data and narratives for the period of 1 April 2020 – 31 March 2021. It comes as the Arts Council England and its environmental partner, the non-profit organisation Julie’s Bicycle mark the 10th year of their world-first environmental programme this year.

Read LAAF’s case study here

Read the full report here

Image: Daraa Tribes performing online at LAAF 2020

In February, LAAF’s Festival Programme Manager Jack Welsh was invited to present as part of A New Direction’s Principles Into Practice online panel.

A series of case studies exploring best practice in work for children and young people through the lens of the Arts Council England Investment Principles.

Jack discussed LAAF’s 22 project, which was produced by Penny Babakhani as part of LAAF 2021 festival.

The case studies explored:

  • Programming content that is relevant to and reflects the concerns faced by young people
  • How to create environmentally sustainable work and workplaces
  • Ways your work can have the most impactful connection with the principle
  • How to create programmes based on playful activism

Read LAAF’s case study: www.anewdirection.org.uk/training-cpd/principles-into-practice/environmental-responsibility/liverpool-arab-arts-festival
Read other case studies from the event: www.anewdirection.org.uk/training-cpd/principles-into-practice/environmental-responsibility

22, the creative anthology commissioned by LAAF as a response to COP26 is to be exhibited at Open Eye’s Digital Window Gallery until 13 February.

22 is a creative anthology by Arab artists from 22 countries across the Middle East and North Africa. Commissioned by Liverpool Arab Arts Festival as a rapid response to COP26, the artistic works include music, visual art, poetry, illustration and photography and highlight the disproportionate impact the climate crisis is having on the countries and communities living within the MENA region.

From water shortages to population displacement, changes in climate and failing crops, the impact of the climate crisis is worsened by the continuing hangovers of conflict and colonialism, meaning the issues already existing in the MENA region are exacerbated.

As global leaders gathered in Glasgow for COP26, each of the 22 artists provided an insight into how the climate crisis is affecting their community. As a creative anthology it creates a time capsule at a crucial moment in history.

Arab voices are not strongly heard within the climate crisis conversation in the West, despite the disproportionate and severe effects those on the ground are facing. Capturing the hopes and fears of a generation of Arab artists, 22 reflects the range of perceptions and preoccupations of those living in or with heritage of these specific Arab areas.

22 exhibits at Open Eye as the Look Climate Lab 2022 launches, ahead of the Look Photo Biennial 2022, the Climate Lab is a series of research projects on climate change. Read more here

The show will be played on the digital screen 11am-4pm Wed-Sun, between Wed 19 Jan – Sun 13 Feb

Explore 22 below


For the first time, Liverpool’s arts organisations have come together in a brand new campaign promoting Liverpool’s impressive cultural credentials.

The Everyman and Playhouse Theatres, Katumba, Bluecoat, Liverpool Philharmonic, Metal Culture, Homotopia, FACT, DaDaFest, The Comedy Trust and Liverpool Arab Arts Festival are just some of around 50 names forming part of the Culture Collective campaign which proudly highlights the city’s vast and diverse culture offer. 

Billboards and advertising hoardings across Liverpool and Manchester will be emblazoned with slogans including ‘The Place is Liverpool. The Time is Now’, ‘Every Language. Every Accent. Every Artform. Every Style.’ and ‘Welcome to the city where the best stories begin…’

Local artists, Raven and Dayzy, are joining forces with Liverpool-based video director Jack Whiteley and GoPlay recording studios to bring the campaign to life with a specially created soundtrack which pays homage to the city’s enviable cultural scene.  This will be showcased on the official website – www.visitliverpool.com/culturesclub – and on cultural social media channels. 

The arts sector has been one of the hardest hit as a result of the Coronavirus pandemic – with many venues closed for long periods or unable to curate in-person programmes due to changes to restrictions.

The Culture Collective is an initiative aimed at attracting local and regional visitors back to the city, shining a spotlight on the huge array of establishments that make up the region’s live performance, music and dance, galleries and exhibitions, film and digital technologies, comedy, festivals and museums.

This new way of collaborative working means resources, including the wealth of creative skills and experience, can all be shared and cross-promoted. 

The importance of the sector was highlighted by the most recent figures which show Liverpool’s leisure, creative and cultural industries:

  • Bring in around £3.3bn to the city region each year
  • Equates to 38 per cent of the city’s economy
  • See a business rate contribution of 49.8 per cent. This means £270.5million is invested in core services such as social care, health care and in education. 
  • Supports 60,000 jobs 

An analysis of 27 cultural organisations funded through the city council’s Cultural Arts Investment Programme showed that in 2021/22, 250,487 people attended live events – significantly lower than the 4.5million recorded in 2019/20. 

The Culture Collective campaign has been funded through the Government’s Culture Recovery Fund which is administered by Arts Council England, some of the cultural organisations involved and Liverpool City Council. A second phase of the project will launch later this year.


Liverpool City Council’s Cabinet Member for Culture and Visitor Economy, Councillor Harry Doyle: 

“This is a hugely exciting campaign involving around 50 cultural organisations – from names that need no introduction, to those whose work is less well known but who are just as awe-inspiring – and they’re all working together to send out the message that their doors are open and they can’t wait to welcome back audiences – old and new. 

“Despite the horrendous challenges this sector has faced over the past two years, their resilience is inspiring and there is a real sense of positivity about the potential of 2022 and the return of local, national and hopefully international visitors. They simply can’t wait to show people what’s in store this year – from big nights out and reflective moments, to belly laughs and enjoying that shared moment of joy with others. 

“Our city’s creative teams are itching to welcome people back and by working together we can shine a spotlight on the city once again and see our much-loved cultural sector come alive and thrive.” 

Mary Cloake, Chief Executive, the Bluecoat:

“As one of the city’s best loved arts venues, the Bluecoat is delighted to be part of a campaign to remind people of Liverpool’s rich cultural offer and the joy to be found in seeing a show, spending time in a gallery or doing something creative. 

“Liverpool needs people to thrive, and Bluecoat is playing a key part in reinvigorating the city centre alongside other cultural attractions. We’ve done our best to ensure our historic building is safe for visitors so that people can start to enjoy culture again. While we were closed during lockdown we transformed our entrance area so if you haven’t visited recently come down and see our fresh new look.” 

Michael Eakin, Chief Executive of Liverpool Philharmonic: 

“We’re delighted to work with Culture Liverpool and arts organisations across our city on the Culture Collective campaign, which will highlight Liverpool’s world-class cultural offer. 

“As with the culture sector as a whole, the pandemic has posed significant challenges to Liverpool Philharmonic, but since Autumn 2021 we have once again presented a busy and artistically vibrant programme of visiting artists from around the world. We are looking forward to continuing to welcome our audiences back to Liverpool Philharmonic in the year ahead.”

Elinor Randle, Artistic Director – Tmesis Theatre, and spokesperson for the COoL Collective (Creative Organisations of Liverpool) which represents 27 key arts organisations based in the Liverpool City Region:

“We are very proud of the collective and the collaborative way we work across a wide variety of art forms and communities. This campaign is exciting as it highlights the rich diversity of incredible work our city region has to offer. We look forward to sharing work, collaborating and welcoming visitors to our festivals and events in 2022!”


Many thrilling voices. One incredible story…

We’re proud to be one voice among the many that make up our city’s amazing cultural story, and we hope you take time to discover what we have to offer.

But remember that there are also others who deserve to be heard too, and we’d love to introduce you to some of these wonderful venues and organisations that share our home.

Because the place is Liverpool.

The time is now.

And this is the city where the best stories begin.


Everyone’s invited.

Liverpool is rich with restless creators – a bubbling stew of artists, companies, groups and venues dedicated to ingenious invention, to the spice and sparkle of new ideas for you, your friends and family to enjoy.

From names that need no introduction, to those whose work is less well known but just as vivid, we can’t wait to show you what we’ve got in store. From big nights out and reflective moments, to belly laughs and quiet sighs, our city’s creative teams are itching to welcome you back to where the best stories happen…




Starring Dayzy & Raven

Directed & Edited by Jack Whiteley 

Produced by Carl Davies at FACT 

Director of Photography: Jamie Haigherty

Focus Puller: Carl Davies 

Gaffer: Chris Moore at Tunstall Film Services

2nd Unit DOP: Jack Whiteley & Carl Davies

Drone Footage: Ant Clausen

Stylist: Beth Jones

Hair & Make-up: Eve Jenkins 

Colourist: Juliette Wileman at Absolute Post 

Sound Design: Joe Wills 

Special Thanks: Laura Johnson, Josh Rowe, Clare Wilde, Jessica Fairclough, Farhana Khan, Dominic Beaumont, Jay Hynd, David Wright, Olivia Graham, Sumuyya Khader, Joanna Rowlands, Jack Welsh, Wesley Storey, Mark McNulty, House of Suarez, Lili Taijaard, Ally Goodman, Emily Guest, Michael Parry, Melodic Distraction, 24 Kitchen Street and Invisible Wind Factory.


Written & Performed By: Dayzy & Raven

Produced By: Fourthirteen

Engineer & Mix By: GoPlay Studios

Mix & Master: Loft Mastering

Music Direction By: Yaw Owusu, The Playmaker Group


20 Stories High | All Things Considered Theatre | Arts Groupie | BlackFest | Bluecoat | BrazUKa | Collective Encounters | DaDaFest | dot-art| FACT | First Take | Focal Studios | Homotopia | International Slavery Museum | Katumba | Kitchen Sink Live | Lady Lever Art Gallery | Liverpool Arab Arts Festival | Liverpool Biennial | Liverpool Empire | Liverpool Everyman & Playhouse Theatres | Liverpool Irish Festival | Liverpool’s Royal Court | Luma Creations | Maritime Museum | Merseyside Dance Initiative | Metal | Movema | OLC Productions | Open Culture | Open Eye Gallery | Pagoda Arts | Paperwork Theatre | Royal Liverpool Philharmonic  | Squash | Sudley House | Tate Liverpool | The Atkinson | The Black-E | The Comedy Trust | The Windows Project | Tmesis Theatre | Unity Theatre | Wired Aerial Theatre | World Museum | Writing on the Wall

This project has been supported using public funding by Arts Council England (https://www.artscouncil.org.uk/) and Culture Liverpool (https://www.cultureliverpool.co.uk/) the culture department of Liverpool City Council (https://liverpool.gov.uk/).  

Watch on YouTube

Liverpool Arab Arts Festival in collaboration with Creative Destruction has produced a series of online conversations titled ARTISTS / IDEAS / NOW. This series is part of LAAF’s four-month festival focused on the climate crisis, and invites leading creatives, activists and thinkers to explore the complexities surrounding the climate emergency.

This conversation looks at the connection between patriarchy and the climate crisis. How is the climate crisis impacting women and people of marginalised genders? Are there feminist solutions to the crisis – perhaps rooted in cultural traditions and practices which have been upended by consumerist habits? How can artists help illuminate the parallels between society’s  treatment of women and nature?

Watch here

The panel will be made up of artists who have contributed to the 22 project
Ala Buisir is a documentary photographer born in Ireland with Libyan roots. A graduate with a BA in Photography from TU Dublin. Then an MA in Journalism from DCU and currently doing a PhD by practice in UL. Her work documents the social and political tension around us today. The aim is to raise awareness by presenting events through different perspectives in hopes that it may also bring about change.Website: www.alabuisir.com
Juliana Yazbeck is an award-winning actor, writer & musical artist. As an actor, she is best known for her roles as Niqabi Ninja in Sara Sharaawi’s play Niqabi Ninja, Roza Salih in Glasgow Girls (National Theatre of Scotland) and Yara in the Emmy-winning series Shankaboot (BBC World Service).Juliana’s debut record SUNGOD was awarded PRS Foundation’s Women Make Music Award. Juliana recently played a sold-out show at London’s Electric Ballroom (2020). In 2019, Juliana played London’s ULU alongside Sudanese icon AlSarah, headlined the National Theatre River Stage and Liverpool Arab Arts Festival, and was nominated for the Arab British Centre’s Award for Culture.Juliana also writes regularly. Her words feature in gal-dem magazine and on Medium.com.Twitter: @julianayaz
Maha Alasaker is a visual artist based in Kuwait. She is a 2014 graduate from the International Center of Photography.Through her artwork, Maha tries to gain a deeper understanding of herself while attempting to engage issues of culture and identity. Her curiosity centers around how a woman’s upbringing affects identity and self-worth.Maha’s projects have been displayed in numerous exhibitions in New York City and London, as well as the United Arab Emirates and Kuwait. Magazines such as Harper’s Bazaar, Vogue, Marie Claire and Rolling Stone have featured her work.In 2019, Maha published her first photo book, “Women of Kuwait”, which was then acquired by the Getty Research Institute and The Thomas J. Watson Library at the Metropolitan Museum of Art.


  • Liverpool Arab Arts Festival to receive funding from second round of the Government’s Culture Recovery Fund
  • LAAF among more than 2,700 recipients to benefit from the latest round of awards from the £1.57 billion Culture Recovery Fund 
  • This award will help bolster LAAF’s artistic and education programmes

Liverpool Arab Arts Festival is delighted to have received a grant of £38,787 from the Government’s £1.57 billion Culture Recovery Fund to help the organisation recover and reopen.

More than £300 million has been awarded to thousands of cultural organisations across the country including LAAF in the latest round of support from the Culture Recovery Fund, the Culture Secretary announced today.

This welcomed support will help LAAF to offset spending reductions due to the pandemic and bolster its artistic and education programmes. LAAF is thankful to both DCMS and Arts Council England for the support of its work.

Over £800 million in grants and loans has already been awarded to support almost 3,800 cinemas, performance venues, museums, heritage sites and other cultural organisations dealing with the immediate challenges of the coronavirus pandemic.

The second round of awards made today will help organisations to look ahead to the spring and summer and plan for reopening and recovery. After months of closures and cancellations to contain the virus and save lives, this funding will be a much-needed helping hand for organisations transitioning back to normal in the months ahead.

Culture Secretary, Oliver Dowden, said:

“Our record breaking Culture Recovery Fund has already helped thousands of culture and heritage organisations across the country survive the biggest crisis they’ve ever faced.

Now we’re staying by their side as they prepare to welcome the public back through their doors – helping our cultural gems plan for reopening and thrive in the better times ahead.”

Sir Nicholas Serota, Chair, Arts Council England, said:

“Investing in a thriving cultural sector at the heart of communities is a vital part of helping the whole country to recover from the pandemic. These grants will help to re-open theatres, concert halls, and museums and will give artists and companies the opportunity to begin making new work. 

We are grateful to the Government for this support and for recognising the paramount importance of culture to our sense of belonging and identity as individuals and as a society.”

The funding awarded today is from a £400 million pot which was held back last year to ensure the Culture Recovery Fund could continue to help organisations in need as the public health picture changed. The funding has been awarded by Arts Council England, as well as Historic England and National Lottery Heritage Fund and the British Film Institute.

Notes to Editors

Arts Council England is the national development agency for creativity and culture. We have set out our strategic vision in Let’s Create that by 2030 we want England to be a country in which the creativity of each of us is valued and given the chance to flourish and where everyone of us has access to a remarkable range of high quality cultural experiences. We invest public money from Government and The National Lottery to help support the sector and to deliver this vision. www.artscouncil.org.uk

Following the Covid-19 crisis, the Arts Council developed a £160 million Emergency Response Package, with nearly 90% coming from the National Lottery, for organisations and individuals needing support. We are also one of the bodies administering the Government’s Culture Recovery Fund. Find out more at www.artscouncil.org.uk/covid19.

At the Budget, the Chancellor announced the £1.57 billion Culture Recovery Fund would be boosted with a further £300 million investment. Details of this third round of funding will be announced soon.

Arts Council England today published its Equality, Diversity and the Creative Case report for 2018/19.

As a National Portfolio Organisations LAAF’s statistics are featured in the report.

The report features data on:

  • The workforce of NPOs including the diversity of people in key leadership roles and at different job levels.
  • The Creative Case for Diversity ratings of NPOs – for the first time shared for each organisation and against the new four-point scale.
  • This year, the report also includes data broken down by artform (discipline), Arts Council Areas and NPO bands.
  • The diversity of applicants to the last year of Grants for the Arts; the first year of National Lottery Project Grants and Developing Your Creative Practice.
  • The diversity of the Arts Council’s workforce, leadership and National and Area Councils.
  • Audience data from NPOs.

You can download the report directly here.

Image; Farah Saleh, Gesturing Refugees