On Saturday evening, we had the pleasure of teaming up with the incredible Phosphoros Theatre with their 5-star production fresh from Edinburgh Fringe: Pizza Shop Heroes, at the wonderful location of Canon Frome Court.
We were so proud to pair our food with the powerful, funny and revealing production, and for Phosphoros' generosity in incorporating our stories into their show. To be hosted by Canon Frome Court, and to spend time at their co-operative farm before the performance, made the event really special indeed.
Almost 100 people attended the event and enjoyed a delicious three course meal, with food from our up-coming recipe book. Shahnaz, our very own chef, whipped up her famed Hyderabadi aubergine curry. We also ate Colombian empenadas, thanks to Vicenta. Dessert was a Stories & Supper special: a combination of the delicious Sudanese Basboosa and our workshop-favourite Lemon Drizzle Cake, named by our team as 'Lemon Love Child!'
This was the first time in Herefordshire for Phosphoros, one of the leading refugee theatre groups in the UK, and they felt really welcomed. Kate at Phosphoros said: "We had such a lovely time at your beautiful, busy, warm home, thank you for having us. Goitom said all he could feel was love (he loved the concept of the honesty shop). We all had a really fab time and had such rich conversation with everyone we spoke to. Huge well done to the Stories & Supper team and an amazing achievement to get so many people through the door!"
One of the highlights, was chatting in the milking shed. Emirjon spoke about the rural farm in Albania, from which he'd had to leave as a child and how it was more advanced than where we were sitting. Syed explained that his role as a child in Afghanistan had been to hold the calf, while his mum milked it. While Abdullah got straight into the goat milking! Quite often, people who have made huge journeys to get to the UK, have come from small-scale rural farming communities. It frequently turns out we have more in common than initially expected and so have quite a bit to talk about!
To watch Shahnaz, a chef from the early days of Stories & Supper but a nervous storyteller, stand on stage and captivate the room with her tales of roti – it was such a proud moment. Despite having a very uncertain future, with the vagaries of our immigration system opposing her, to have been able to build her confidence in her cooking skills and her newly discovered ability of acting, is incredible.