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Programme Announced for First-Ever BSL Inclusive and Accessible Arts Festival in Medway, BUP! Festival

The festival runs 1-2 October.

Programme Announced for First-Ever BSL Inclusive and Accessible Arts Festival in Medway, BUP! Festival

D-Live! has announced the programme for BUP! Festival, the first-ever British Sign Language (BSL)-dedicated free arts festival in Medway, curated for Deaf children and their families. When translated in BSL, BUP! represents a lot of people coming together, echoing D-Live!'s ethos and commitment to establishing accessibility for all; this will be an overarching theme for the festival.

At BUP! Festival, the team will take over Sun Pier House on Saturday 1st and Sunday 2nd October with a programme aimed to encourage and promote literacy amongst Deaf children and their families. At school, the majority of Deaf children are behind their hearing peers when it comes to language development and enjoyment of reading. The aim of the festival is to positively counteract this with a specialised programme including storytelling, art activities, film and performance to encourage improved literacy for Deaf children.

The weekend will see art and drama workshops focused on distinctive characters for participants to creatively engage with the programme. The cinema will be hosting Action, Drama & Comedy Showreels with child friendly animations. Mime, Magic & More is the live performance series which will run across the weekend the day. Alongside this there will be stalls from Riverside Gallery, BSL Community, KDCS and Medway Council. The activities have been curated and allow for engagement for children from the age of 5.

BUP! Festival will benefit Deaf children and their families in Kent and will provide them with a direct festival experience in BSL. 90% of deaf children have hearing parents and many have never met a deaf adult in their lives; BUP! Festival will provide an opportunity for audiences and Deaf children to see positive Deaf adult role models.

D-Live! have worked with Deaf children, adults and families in Medway for the last four years to promote literacy in both BSL and English language. The company has conducted this through a series of art and drama workshops led by Deaf creatives. With BUP! Festival, the team will build on this learning to set up a weekend programme based at Sun Pier House for continued access to resources for the community.



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