Heartstone

Descendants of All Worlds


The Finale

Heartstone organises central finale exhibitions every year when contributions from groups across a region can be brought together. An example is the Liverpool Cathedral Descendants of all Worlds finale exhibition in March 2002

Liverpool CathedralOn Monday, March 4th, the Heartstone Exhibition, 'Descendants of All Worlds' was officially opened by the Dean of Liverpool, the Right Reverend Dr. Rupert Hoare. Children and young people from across Merseyside were present to share in the opening presentation given by Sitakumari who, using dance-drama and storytelling presented one of the stories within the exhibition, 'Rahu & the Eclipse'. The story was an appropriate opening to the exhibition and week of events as it dates from the 2nd Century AD and tells of the need to put aside differences and work in harmony, a concept at the core of Heartstone's work in challenging prejudice and intolerance.

The exhibition was intended to carry three underlying messages: firstly that people, whichever part of the world they may come from or their background are more similar than different, that cultures may seem to have little in common but beneath the surface are individuals who can be related to and understood; secondly that victimisation, wherever it rears its ugly head must not be ignored; thirdly, that many current global issues require co-operation to solve thus demonstrating the fallacy of racist, xenophobic and intolerant beliefs and actions.

speakersVisitors and speakers through the week included a wide range of people - in addition to children and young people, we had teachers, youth workers, Police officers, politicians, senior representatives from several faiths including Christians, Jews, Hindus and Moslems. We also had soldiers from 1st The Queen's Dragoon Guards, Royal Navy personnel, marine scientists Dr. Kevin Robinson and Dr. Martin Le Tissier and actress Dawn Lambert all of whom had brought particular Heartstone photostories to life during the week. The variety of people present prompted several to comment that it was the first time they had ever seen all of these people together at a single event and they weren't in conflict! In addition to the Dean, special guests included Ms. Louise Ellman, MP, Mr. Ruwan Uduwerage-Pereira, General Secretary of the National Black Police Association, and Cpt. Chris Palmer of the Ministry of Defence. Young people came from Heartstone projects in Newcastle, Bradford, Stoke on Trent and Preston as well as of course Liverpool itself. The Newcastle group of young people excelled themselves by taking part in the dance-drama performance with Sitakumari which introduced the exhibition at the finalé on Friday 8th March. With sponsorship from Arriva Trains, they had arrived the night before and took part in hectic rehearsals just before the big day!

dance

This was an example of one of the largest exhibitions staged by Heartstone to date and we were delighted to have been given the opportunity to present it within the full splendour of Liverpool Cathedral, the largest cathedral in Europe.

Since 2002, Heartstone has staged finale exhibitions in many different parts of the country and it was as a result of feedback from these events that the new concept of mini- DOAW sites across the UK was launched in 2006 at the House of Commons to ensure these stories could reach an even wider audience and in more remoter locations.