This year’s Festival of Debate, coordinated by Opus, was a series of 80 events hosted across the city with a range of partners, lasting from April right through to the end of June.
To document the festival, we commissioned local filmmaker Brett Chapman to create a short film, showing some of the best talks and capturing the atmosphere of the events. With his recent accomplishments in film – a clutch of awards including Audience Choice at Indie Flicks and Best Documentary at Isle of Man – there was no doubt in our minds that Brett would be able to capture the lively essence of Festival of Debate 2018.
The short features some of this year’s keynote speakers, including former Greek Minister of Finance Yanis Varoufakis, Ed Miliband & Geoff Lloyd, author and journalist Reni Eddo-Lodge and activist Helen Pankhurst, as well as Trump The Musical and the packed-out Should We Give Money To People Who Beg? panel discussion, hosted in collaboration with youth charity Roundabout.
A real tribute to the festival’s audiences, partners, sponsors and speakers, the city had a real sense of energy over the three months, as though it was constantly in discussion, and lots of the feedback we’ve had so far mentions how ‘in-person’ talks, performances and discussions provided a refreshing change from a world of impersonal digital communication.
We’re already starting to think about Festival of Debate 2019, so watch this space.
Words: Charlotte Flavell