This website uses cookies. Read more about our cookie/privacy policy.

Accept and Close

The Sheffield culture guide written by in-the-know locals

Migration Matters

In 2007 Sheffield became the UK’s first City of Sanctuary – a place that welcomes asylum-seekers and refugees, that offers a hand to people in need of safety. Over Refugee Week and the weekend running up to it, join in a celebration of diversity in the city with the Migration Matters theatre and arts festival.

The eight-day festival champions Sheffield artists – those who were born here and those who now call it home. The programme includes everything from poetry to puppetry, via live music and film screenings. It joins in wider conversations surrounding Refugee Week, exploring the impact of refugees on the country at the same time as shining a spotlight on Sheffield's creativity, diversity and vibrancy.

Venues for this year's festival include Theatre Deli, DINA, Abbeydale Picture House, Showroom, and the Crucible.

See the full Migration Matters 2019 programme below.

Jericho’s Rose

Sat. 15 June 2019

Theatre Deli

A show looking at displacement from two perspectives: a grandfather struggling with Alzheimer’s and an artist struggling to stay in the UK. What happens when neither can remember where they belong?

Our Darnall

Sat. 15 June 2019

Darnall Library, Britannia Road, S9 5JG

An afternoon hosted by ​​​​​​​Ignite Imaginations, with live performances, an exhibition of artwork created by local community groups in Darnall, and more.

To & Fro

Multiple dates

Theatre Deli

A performance and exhibition from Mafwa, a community theatre company in Leeds, working with refugees, asylum seekers and settled community members to explore how we move through and interact with the cities we now call home.

Immigration Crisis: The Musical

Sun. 16 June 2019

Theatre Deli

Centred on the lives of four women – two migrants, a third-generation migrant, and someone who just moved to Sheffield from the south – and the bond they form around the dinner table in their new house together.

Palestine + 100: Stories From A Century After The Catastrophe

Sun. 16 June 2019

DINA

Readings from contributors to an anthology of contemporary Palestinian writing, offering their own spin on science fiction and fantasy as they speculate on the future of their home country.

Mohand and Peter

Sun. 16 June 2019

Theatre Deli

Mohand and Peter travel everywhere and anywhere in a click of their fingers. A backflip in time, a quick hop back home. With humour and visual poetry they'll jump from one character to another – catch them while you can.

The Wall

Sun. 16 June 2019

Theatre Deli

A sociodrama exploration of the role that physical walls – such as the Berlin Wall, the West Bank Barrier, the Hungarian Border Wall and Trump’s Wall with Mexico – have in keeping communities apart.

Pizza Shop Heroes

Mon. 17 June 2019

Theatre Deli

Refugee actors take centre-stage, reclaiming their stories and shining a light on masculinity and forced migration.

Routes to Roots

Mon. 17 June 2019

Theatre Deli

The culmination of an eight-week project led by Zimbabwean dancer/drummer/singer Tongesayi Gumbo for young Sheffield-based artists, inspired by stories of migration and journey.

Refugee Tales Vol III

Mon. 17 June 2019

DINA

Join Comma Press for the Sheffield launch of the third volume in their collection modelled on Chaucer’s Canterbury Tales.

Together Workshop Sheffield

Mon. 17 June 2019

Theatre Deli

"How can you help? What do refugees really need? A friend. And fun, lots of fun!" This workshop is a place for people from all backgrounds to meet and have fun together, with no previous theatre experience necessary.

Nikesh Shukla in conversation with Magid Magid

Tue. 18 June 2019

Crucible Theatre

The unorthodox ex-Lord Mayor of Sheffield joins the best-selling author and compiler Nikesh Shukla (The Good Immigrant) to talk about their experiences with the hostile-environment, Brexit Britain, and the route into an immigrant planet.

Three Mothers

Tue. 18 June 2019

Theatre Deli

An uplifting and intertwined story spanning 60 years of three women’s determination to carry on and create new lives – against a backdrop of enforced migration and refugee status.

Over the Margins

Sat. 18 May 2019 — Tue. 18 June 2019

Theatre Deli

A play of vignettes, exploring the theme of barriers, borders, and margins – how people overcome obstacles and cross boundaries, whether physical, geographical or personal.

Made in Spain

Wed. 19 June 2019

Cellar Theatre

An evening of foot stomping comedy with Sonia Aste, a Spaniard living in the UK who believes "cultural differences are like Sangria – a mix that leaves a headache, but we always ask for more."

Seyed Ali Jaberi and the Hamdel Ensemble

Wed. 19 June 2019

Abbeydale Picture House

All Because of Love is a new production bringing the poetry of Persia’s beloved mystic poet Rumi to life in the magificent Picture House – with hauntingly beautiful Sufi music, dance and poetry.

You, Me and Those Who Came Before

Thu. 20 June 2019

Theatre Deli

A celebration of the rich and vibrant lives of migrants in Sheffield and around the world.

Home is not the Place

Fri. 21 June 2019

Theatre Deli

A solo show by Annie George, telling an intimate story of personal and political independence.

Benjamin Zephaniah & The Revolutionary Minds

Fri. 21 June 2019

The Leadmill

An evening of reggae-poetry from one of the greatest poets of his generation, strongly influenced by the music and poetry of Jamaica and what he calls “street politics”. With support from Sheffield’s first poet laureate Otis Mensah.

Storytelling Workshop

Fri. 21 June 2019

Theatre Deli

Alim Kamara brings the campfire to the stage. Gather round!

Stories Of Sanctuary

Sat. 22 June 2019

Theatre Deli

An evening of songs by people seeking sanctuary in County Durham, coming to Sheffield on tour.

The Past in the Present

Sat. 22 June 2019

Showroom

Short films by three Palestinian filmmakers in different locations, looking at different points in time. On the 1929 launch of the Palestinian women's movement, children's lives/dreams in the West Bank, and the history of photography in Gaza.

Daylight Come

Multiple dates

The Library Theatre

A story from the Windrush generation – revealing the racial prejudice faced by people who responded to the government's calls to come and rebuild postwar Britain, alongside the lived experiences of love, laughter and the music of the 1950s.

Parson Cross Community Celebration

Sat. 22 June 2019

Parson Cross Library, 320 Wordsworth Avenue, S5 8NL

An afternoon of art, crafts, music and food, celebrating the community of Parson Cross.

Barang! with Nídia

Fri. 21 June 2019 — Sat. 22 June 2019

DINA

A night of global adventures in bass, welcoming to town Nídia all the way from Lisbon.

Outside/Inside

Mon. 17 June 2019 — Sat. 22 June 2019

Theatre Deli

A showcase of work by three artists from different countries, backgrounds, cultures and religions, exploring how they overcome barriers through their work.

Love From Syria

Sat. 15 June 2019 — Sat. 22 June 2019

Theatre Deli

An innovative audio adventure created by Syrian refugee families in Bedford and singer-composer Roshi Nasehi.

Origins

Sat. 15 June 2019 — Sat. 22 June 2019

Theatre Deli

A series of images by Nadjet Ben Maghnia capturing different parts of Algeria, born from curiosity and nostalgia for the artist's motherland.