With the repercussions of the COVID-19 pandemic being felt around the world, Liverpool Arab Arts Festival (LAAF)  which has been running annually since 1998 has, like many other such events, shifted to a digital format for its 2020 program, which will be held from July 9-18.
Rather than physically attending the festival, audiences are able to sign up for some events via LAAF’s website, and will be sent a link to film screenings, Zoom conversations or performances, while music events will take place live on Facebook.
The festival launches on July 9 with members of Moroccan musical collective N3rdistan Walead Ben Selim and Widad Brocos, kicking off a program that boasts influential thinkers and performers from across the Arab world. Highlights include performances from poet and artist-in-residence Lisa Luxx, Moroccan group Daraa Tribes (who will close the festival), Syrian electronic musician and producer Hello Psychaleppo, screenings of Arab films from across the diaspora (including “Mawlana”, “Jaddoland” and the BBC Arabic Festival, which will showcase female directors), and conversations and panels covering everything from creative writing and safeguarding national literature to the challenges facing those writing about Palestine.