Child Criminal Exploitation Project changing lives

Date published: 13 March 2019

Rochdale artist Parvez Qadir has written and directed a new monologue for M6 Theatre based on the urgent and critical theme of child criminal exploitation.

'Crossing the Line' looks at what it means to feel trapped.

17-year-old Imran finds himself at a dangerous crossroads when a gang want their debt paid.

Through a powerful performance and accompanying workshop, issues around identity, belonging and exploitation for a character in a seemingly impossible situation are explored.

This M6 Theatre tour of schools is designed to develop personal resilience and provides support pathways for young people.

One young participant said: "I wouldn't have thought about any of that before today, I might have fallen for it before, but not now."

Crossing the Line was funded by Home Office Building Stronger Britain Together, researched with young people in Rochdale and produced by M6 in collaboration with Breaking Barriers.

Parvez said: “We’re able to tackle such a topical issue by offering a creative experience outside the standard classroom environment. It allows a safe space for open and honest discussions and provides young people with a platform to be heard.”

Parvez’s history with M6 Theatre goes back to age 6 when he saw the company perform at his Rochdale primary school and his imagination was lit. He later performed in M6’s bi-lingual production Two Days as a Tiger and worked as a freelance facilitator before moving into writing.

Parvez recently spent two years as M6’s Associate Artist, producing a range of short films including Don’t Hate Me, created by local primary school children and Just Someone I Know, raising awareness around children missing education. These films have gone on to be shown at film festivals in the UK, Europe and the US.

With M6’s support Parvez then went on to set up his own company, Breaking Barriers, as a creative producer and facilitator. He also won Artist of the Year 2018 at the Rochdale Borough Sport and Culture awards.

Parvez’s film of Crossing the Line, supported by an education resource pack, will be available through his website and the M6 website in summer 2019.

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