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Listen to artists and bands that have appeared at Journeys Festival International.

Check out the latest additions to the Journeys Live playlist. With a wealth of musical styles and global influences this playlist features some of the finest musicians and bands from around the world. Each featured artist has appeared live at the Festival. 

Follow the playlist to hear new music in our regular updates.

Roots to Fruits

Roots to Fruits

Manchester ROOTS group recordings

Roots to Fruits is a series of podcasts from Journeys Festival International Manchester, produced by ArtReach, and hosted by Nuria López de la Oliva. Journeys Festival International Manchester is a yearly programme that explores the refugee experience through great art. In this mini-series, you’ll have the opportunity to meet the members of the ROOTS group, a dedicated group of international creatives who guide us in creating each year’s festival.


In these podcasts, Mandla, Alsa, Zeeshan, Abas, Khalid and Firoozeh explore their experiences as refugees and people seeking asylum in the city of Manchester. They reflect on these notions creatively through writing, music and story-telling.

Thank you to Jack Hartshorn for editing the podcasts and Z-Arts for lending their facilities to record the podcasts. 


EP1: Mandla Rae. Roots member/writer


Zimbabwe-born Mandla Rae is a creative writer based currently in Manchester. Having moved from Zimbabwe with part of her family when she was a child, and been grown up in London, Mandla uses her own experience of forced migration as an inspiration for the work she produces.

EP2: Alsa Tabatabaei & Zeeshan Saeed. Roots members/ writers, visual art and performance artists


Alsa has combined a career in Computer Sciences and Cyber Security with her passion for painting. She is currently an art facilitator at the organisation Mustard Tree. Zeeshan Saeed is a young creative from Pakistan, who moved to Manchester in 2012 with his mother. He has taken part in different projects as part of Journeys Festival International and MIF.


EP3: Abas ElJanabi & Khalid Mussa. Roots members/ writers, singers and performers.


Abas ElJanabi is originally from Iraq, and has lived in Manchester for many years. He is an actor, set designer and creative writer. Abas has been involved in many performance, film and TV projects.


Khalid is from Eritrea, and has lived in the UK for the last 4 years. He enjoys singing and acting and would like to continue exploring this field. He actually had the chance to perform in a few events for the organisation Revive. 

EP4: Firoozeh Fozouni. Roots members/ setar player, writer and visual artist


Firoozeh Fozouni, a multidisciplinary artist from Iran who has lived in Manchester for the last 5 years. Firoozeh is a master of setar (Iranian traditional instrument), a visual artist and a poet. She has published 6 books in Persian, and one in English that has just been published – Disharmonious songs of my country. 

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