Youth & Children’s Theatre
Our weekly Youth Theatre and Children’s Theatre in the Bekaa Valley gives Syrian refugees a platform to find their own voice. At Seenaryo we want every child to thrive so we work on: encouraging self-expression; empowering children through creativity; giving participants confidence as budding theatre-makers. At the end of each term, the children and young people perform an original show that they have devised and developed themselves. Delivered in partnership with Women Now.
This project was different – it involved group work and increased my confidence
Aswat Seenaryo Choir
“Aswat Seenaryo” means Seenaryo Voices. “Aswat” represents our participants’ singing voices but, just as importantly, their voices as artists and young people with something to say. Our choir sings high-quality music from around the world, developing participants’ musical horizons, as well as writing songs collaboratively as a choir. Aswat Seenaryo also collaborates with choirs in the UK, increasing cultural exchange and mutual understanding. We perform around Lebanon to local audiences, other refugee groups and at high-profile concerts and festivals. Delivered in partnership with Women Now.
Aswat Seenaryo made me appreciate my country, Syria
During the holidays Seenaryo run weeklong intensive projects where our artists collaborate with participants to create an original piece of theatre. Every aspect of the show is devised from scratch: script, songs, dances and design. The performance is shared with friends and the public on the final evening. As with all of Seenaryo’s work, training is a central aspect and we work alongside four young trainees each week. Many Showbuilds continue to live after their debut being re-worked, re-rehearsed and toured locally by our trainees.
It has been a great experience and it helped me to tell the truth - in a funny way because that's the best way to reach people
In Autumn of 2017 Seenaryo launched it’s first Women’s Theatre programme for Syrian women in the Bekaa Valley. Nine women between the ages of 16 and 42 came together to work on the devising process led by Farah Wardani, a theatre director identified by Seenaryo. Together they created Souriyeh, a theatre piece about love, death, hope, imprisonment, and success in the time of war. The themes of the play were very much inspired by the women’s own experience of living through war and migration before finding refuge in Lebanon. Delivered in partnership with Women Now.
I’ve changed a lot. I’ve become more self-confident and can now face any problem. I discovered I am more capable than I thought and appreciate myself. When I stepped onstage I realised how powerful theatre is as a space to express everything inside us.
Our Creative English workshops (for children and adults) allow participants to develop confidence in speaking within an enjoyable and relaxed environment. Participants join a ten-week course where we improve vocabulary, listening and speaking skills in real-life and role-play situations. Creative English celebrates English as a language for enjoyment and practical use, whilst still allowing participants to benefit from lesson-based practice. Delivered in partnership with Women Now.
It has made a huge difference in my life coming here. The teaching quality is different to anywhere else.
For each of their public exhibitions, Beirut Art Center (BAC) deliver a guided tour and accompanying arts workshop for a group of Seenaryo’s Syrian participants living in the Bekaa Valley. BAC is a non-profit space and platform dedicated to contemporary art in Lebanon. An unprecedented initiative in Beirut, the center makes art accessible to a large and growing audience of residents and visitors alike. Participants get a chance to engage with a rich and diverse range of contemporary art and cultural practice, as well as develop skills in a visual art form. Delivered in partnership with Beirut Art Center and Women Now.
Previously, with support from Ettijahat-Independent Culture, within the framework of Create Syria – Seenaryo has also taken children to exhibitions and theatre productions at Basma w Zeitouneh, Marfa’ and Sursock Museum.
I learnt that women can do anything
Maktabat Seenaryo (Seenaryo’s Library) is a lending library for refugees in Lebanon. There is an urgent need for quality children’s books to help refugees learn English – a key skill for building bridges with host communities in Lebanon and employment later in life. We are in the process of launching this library for Syrian children in partnership with Sawa for Development & Aid.