Monday, December 23, 2013


This Christmas, in celebration of the ‘little town of Bethlehem’, the Bethlehem Unwrapped festival will support Holy Land Trust’s unique work providing non-violence training for children, young people and adults.
Justin Butcher web
 “I visited Bethlehem for the first time last year and came away profoundly inspired by the extraordinary peace-makers I met on both sides of the divide. In Bethlehem, a new cultural phenomenon is springing up, which Palestinians describe as ‘Beautiful Resistance’ – in art, music, dance and drama, street theatre and comedy – expressing their determination to resist injustice and to celebrate their hope for freedom in the seeming absence of all hope.  It’s my hope that the Bethlehem Unwrapped festival, with its amazing and eclectic line-up of artists and events, will give audiences here in the UK the chance to experience some of the hope of the people of Bethlehem this Christmas.” 

Justin Butcher, Creative Director 

What’s on

Bethlehem Unwrapped brings together a rich and eclectic programme of culture. Tickets for all events are available HERE.
ART - December 23rd 6pm: ‘Unwrapped’ – Opening ceremony featuring unveiling of major art installation in St James’s Courtyard, broadcast message fromHoly Land Trust director Sami Awad in Bethlehem, and opening of children’s art exhibition from Bethlehem, ‘All They Paint is the Wall’. Un-ticketed, free event
POETRY – December 29th 7.30pm: ‘Slammed Up’ – an evening of slam poetry in the key of freedom, with 2012 World Slam championHarry Baker, Rafeef ZiadahZia AhmedBridget Minamore & Dizraeli. More info here and to buy tickets click here.

beth mark steel 1
COMEDY – December 30th 7.30pm:  ‘Stand Up Against the Wall’ – comedy with BBC comedy star & Independent columnist Mark Steel, the renowned Jeremy Hardy, Hampstead Comedy Club host Ivor Dembina (****The Guardian), Andy Zaltzman (“Breathtakingly good” Time Out) & Dave Cohen (“Smart & very funny” Huffington Post UK)
beth jeremy
FILM – Jan 2nd 7.30pm: ‘Jeremy Hardy vs the Israeli Army’ – comedy doc following News Quiz veteran Jeremy Hardy on a hair-raising path through the Second Intifada. Palestinian film-maker and Bethlehem resident Leila Sansour will participate in a Q&A after the screening. (“Outstanding … riveting” **** Peter Bradshaw, The Guardian)
Yoyam Ottolenghi & Sammi Tamini
CUISINE – Jan 3rd 7.30pm: Bethlehem Feast – Yotam Ottolenghiand Sami Tamimi present a Bethlehem Christmas dinner, raising funds for Holy Land Trust’s ‘Future Peacemakers’ appeal. A unique opportunity for a truly seasonal feast in the presence of the masters of Middle Eastern cuisine. Come prepared for after-dinner dancing, led by Palestinian dance troupe Al-ZaytounaPresented by Zaytoun CIC and Rocket Food. 
PANEL – Jan 4th 8pm: ‘Both sides of the Barrier – Separation or Security?’ – speakers include Jeff Halper, founder of the Israeli Committee Against House Demolitions (ICAHD),  Leila Sansour, Bethlehem resident, filmaker and founder of Open BethlehemYiftah Curiel, public affairs spokesman at Embassy of Israel, London and Alan Johnson, Britain Israel Communications and Research CentreChaired by David Loyn, BBC Newsnight Afghanistan correspondent.
beth NigelKennedyPolishconcertb(PaulMitchell)_-_Copy
MUSIC – Jan 5th 7.30pm: ‘The Bridge’ – concert with legendary violinist Nigel Kennedy and friends, performing his own composition The Bridge, with singers from the Tallis Scholars, directed by Peter Phillips, world-renowned Palestinian singer Reem Kelani, actor Adjoa Andoh and guest speaker Yasmin Alibhai-Brown
For tickets to all events, click here