Destinies is a theatre and music production celebrating the stories and creativity of young refugees and asylum seekers living in Derbyshire. It is partnership project between Ava Hunt Theatre, Sinfonia Viva, Orchestras Live and co-created with young people and Derbyshire County Council Virtual School.

‘Destinies’ created a space for young people from vulnerable and culturally diverse backgrounds to have their voices heard and reflected through narratives, songs and music. 

The full length edited film was screened at Derby Theatre on Monday 15 November 2021 and can be seen here:


‘Destinies’ introduced young people to the creative arts and involved them in all aspects of a production, giving an insight to the breadth of creative industries.

This project was to be a traditional performance piece in 2020 but this was thwarted by Covid19. Everyone worked hard together to devise new ways of working, with a mixture of online and in-person meetings, artistic sessions, composing, writing, drawing and singing culminating in a presentation of songs, script animation and music at Derby Theatre in November 2021. 

Created written performed by and with young people Young Creators, Musicians, Animators, Performers: Alex, Connor, Essa, Grace, Winnie, Yazan, Jess, Amir, Habib, Marcus, Zac, Nadia, Sem, Emma, Kori, Adam, Tom, Annessa. Sophie

Creative Mentors: Derbyshire County Council Virtual School:
Christine Haywood, Debi Hedderwick, Angus McLeod, Wendy Johnson, Meg Quinn, Rachael Milczarek

Directed & Produced: Ava Hunt
Producer: Frances Watt
Dramatury & Writing: Lin Coghlan
Animation: Nick Hersey
Animation and QLab Operation: Ben Walden
Lighting and Production Management: Andy Purves
Sound: Harry
Performer: Karim Hayada
Musical Director: Raph Clarkson
Musicians: Matthew Dunn, Raghad Haddad, Rosie Toll
Workshops Support: Acushla Vigh-Bolger, Michael Johnston, Kai Bools, Emily Owen, Sarah Hailstones, Caity Schneema, Ali Bramwell
Sinfonia Viva Workshop Support: Ellie Martindale, Marianne Barraclough, Hattie Coupe
Costume and Props: Jasper Turnbull
Filming and Editing: Swainson Productions
Additional filming: Adam Robertson (Film City TV), Roger Knott-Fayle
Stills Photography: Chris Webb
Partners: Orchestras Live, Sinfonia Viva and Ava Hunt Theatre Company


- Winner 2020 Arts and Culture Children & Young People NOW Award
- Winner 2022 CREATIVITY FOR GOOD Mainframe Award 2022
  • 27 Oct 2020Derby Theatre
  • 15 Nov 2021Derby Theatre
  • “I always write poems and I just write stuff. But I just I didn’t know I could write something and put it to work and then it makes sense when somebody else reads it or when somebody else speaks it to me and I can reflect it to myself through somebody else. That was just magic to be honest.” Young Refugee/Asylum seeker participant
  • On meeting everyone in person - not just Zoom: "It was nice to see people properly - their legs and torso not just [points at head]. It's been good and I’ve been looking forward to it since I found out, and how theatre stuff can still happen socially distanced, which is good." Young participant
  • "I thought it was going to be crap. Like I thought it was going to be just some random people trying to put a song together and just be really bad at it. But they’re actually not." Young participant
  • "Because, you know, like different people have come together you know, like friends. I don’t know no one here so, we come together - know each other, make, like, friendly and sing together, acting and move together."Young Refugee/Asylum seeker participant

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