Middle East

Storytelling from Syria

'Storytelling from Syria' brings together two non-fiction works that offer a glimpse into the threatening effects of war on individuals.

Screenings will be introduced by the directors and followed by a panel discussion and Q&A

Panel Chair: Robin Yassin-Kassab, author and journalist

Panel: Axel Salvatori-Sinz, Director of The Shebabs of Yarmouk; Diana El Jeiroudi and Orwa Nyrabia, Syrian filmmakers and co-founders of Dox Box and ProAction Films

The Shebabs of Yarmouk, documentary

Image copyright Axel Salvatori-Sinz
Image caption 'The Shebabs of Yarmouk' follows a group of close friends in the disorienting time leading up to the Syrian uprising. Directed by Axel Salvatori-Sinz.
Image copyright Axel Salvatori-Sinz
Image caption Axel Salvatori-Sinz

The Shebabs, a tight group of boys and girls, live in the Palestinian refugee camp of Yarmouk in Damascus, Syria. Friends since they were teens, their approach to adulthood brings them face-to-face with complex decisions about their relationships and their lives. As their need for freedom clashes with their desire to stick together, the politics brewing around them make things even more difficult. This thoughtful documentary follows a group of youths in the disorienting time leading up to the Syrian uprising. The Shebabs of Yarmouk has won several awards including the Regard Neuf for Best First Film at Visions du RĂ©el 2013 and the RTP Award for Best Research Film at Doclisboa 2013.

Director: Axel Salvatori-Sinz was born in 1982 and grew up in the suburbs of Lyon, France. With a background in Anthropology focusing on Arabic and Muslim societies, he holds two Masters Degrees in documentary filmmaking. Axel made several films on commission for the French Embassy in Salvador. The Shebabs of Yarmouk is his first feature-length documentary.

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Media caption'The Shebabs of Yarmouk' follows a group of close friends in the disorienting time leading up to the Syrian uprising.

Farewell to Damascus, citizen journalism

Image copyright Azza Al-Hamwi
Image caption Syrian actress and activitist May Skaf discusses her feelings about leaving her home city in the midst of a revolution. Directed by Azza Al-Hamwi.

Syrian actress, artist and activist, May Skaf has been detained a number of times due to her outspoken stance against Bashar Al-Assad's regime. Her views, which she has shared publicly both on the street and via social media, have often forced her to take shelter from the authorities - often without electricity and water. But her vocal position persisted. In this short film, first-time director Azza Al-Hamwi allows May to speak directly about her circumstances, her fears and most particularly, her feelings about leaving her home city in the midst of a revolution.

Director: Azza Al-Hamwi is an illustrator and fine artist. Her work has been exhibited in many exhibitions and won her several awards. This is her first film.

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Media captionSyrian actress and activist, May Skaf, discusses her feelings about leaving her home city in the midst of a revolution.

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