Arts festival to celebrate life of Jo Cox

Safya Khan-Ruf - 02 05 17

Jo Cox’s life has inspired a group of artists and producers to launch a unique arts festival commemorating the life of the Labour MP next month.

The Change of Art festival will pilot in London on 17 June at the Human Rights Action Centre Performance space in Shoreditch. It will take place during the Great Get Together, marking the first anniversary of Cox’s murder.

According to the organisers:

“Jo’s legacy transcends politics and reaches into the heart of our communities; our aim for the festival is to bring people together from all over London, in a shared event, to honour Jo and to share our love for this multicultural city.”

The inspiration came from Jo Cox’s maiden speech to Parliament, when she spoke the words: “We are far more united and have far more in common with each other than things that divide us.”

Sarah Sigal, festival co-founder and an independent writer and producer, says the idea for the festival came after meeting others also involved in the arts, via HOPE not hate’s grassroots movement. HOPE not hate’s More in Common weekend last year was a key piece of inspiration, too.

“We saw we could use our skills to create something to honour Jo Cox’s legacy and so that something positive could come out of something tragic,” she said.

The festival theme will be More in Common. “We want to bring people together, and have a wide range of art – singing, dancing, theatre – from a range of different backgrounds,” Sigal said.

Sigal is hoping this event will turn into a weekend festival across the UK in the coming years. The pilot is being organised by 10 art enthusiasts and the aim is to get 250 people to attend. Tickets will be free, with a pay-as-you-wish system in place.

Comedian Bridget Christie will be performing, and Sigal says they’ve received around 40 applications to perform in the 10-minute acts.



Stay informed

Sign up for emails from HOPE not hate to make sure you stay up to date with the latest news, and to receive simple actions you can take to help spread HOPE.


We couldn't do it without our supporters

Fund research, counter hate and support and grow inclusive communities by donating to HOPE not hate today

I am looking for...


Useful links

Close Search X
Donate to HOPE not hate