UK 2012

A One-Night Festival starring people who’ve experienced homelessness
Monday 2 July 2012
Royal Opera House, London2012FestT_SE_P_S_c low res

Arts groups who work with homeless people in the UK such as Cardboard Citizens, the Choir with No Name, Open Cinema and Streetwise Opera took 5-10 minute slots throughout the evening to sing, present drama work, poetry and film screen films.

The Paul Hamlyn Hall and the Crush Room at the Royal Opera House were transformed into stages where the audience enjoyed choral singing, opera and theatre performances, as well as poetry, films and new work from performing arts groups and solo artists.

The evening culminated in all the performers and audience coming together in a mass choir to sing a newly-commissioned work by world-renowned composer Gavin Bryars.

Matching the ethos of the Olympics, the event also profiled the work of homeless people internationally. Audiences watched pre-recorded performances on film from international groups such as the Choir of Hope and Inspiration in Melbourne and Singers of the Street in San Francisco.

  • First time in history that homeless people had been given an official platform at the celebrations of an Olympic and Paralympic Games
  • Hosted by Royal Opera House in the Paul Hamlyn Hall and Crush Room
  • Part of the London 2012 Festival, the culmination of the Cultural Olympiad
  • Around 300 performers from 12-15 UK groups took slots at the mic with contributions on film from homeless groups from around the world
  • Homeless Link hosted an Action Zone for audience members to find out how they can ‘Take a Step’ to end homelessness
  • Evening ended in a newly-commissioned song by Gavin Bryars
  • You can watch the recorded live performance, and visit the online Action Zone from this website.