Sir Lenny Henry to headline Soho Media Club’s second BE YOU festival

May 16, 2023
Sir Lenny Henry (Credit: Jake Turney/Comic Relief)

Soho Media Club has announced actor, comedian, singer, television presenter and writer, Sir Lenny Henry, is set to give a Fireside Chat at the 2nd edition of its annual festival of media culture, BE YOU on 13 July 2023 in Soho.

Praising the festival, which exists to accelerate positive change in media culture, Sir Lenny Henry said, “I want the next wave of talent to feel inspired and empowered about building a
career in film and TV and feel confident that their voices will be heard. I am looking forward to sharing my knowledge and stories, but I also am keen to hear from the younger talent and have
an honest conversation on how we can create a safe and equal industry – that’s why I am excited to be part of Soho Media Club’s BE YOU Festival this year.”

Soho Media Club’s Resident MC, Muki Kulhan will lead a dynamic discussion between Sir Lenny Henry and an industry rising star to challenge the status quo, compare and contrast generational experiences and explore what we can all do to improve culture and drive positive change.

Co-founder of Soho Media Club, Tomasz Witkowski, said, “We are excited that Sir Lenny Henry, who has long been an advocate for equal rights and representation, will be opening the BE YOU
Festival to talk about paving the way for positive change and increasing diversity on and off screen. The conversation is going to be fresh and fun, so be prepared for a few surprises.”

This year’s BE YOU Festival tackles a whole slate of topics which address media culture, including why authentic storytelling and representation matter, how young filmmakers can get their foot in the door, curating a culture of belonging for young intersectional identities and advice on how to call out toxic behaviour.

New to the programme this year, is also an exclusive “Ask Me Anything” session, where anyone, including new and rising talent, have the opportunity to hear industry experts share their personal career stories and ask the panel for invaluable advice. Moderated by industry trailblazer, Jasmine Dotiwala, “Ask Me Anything” will feature a stellar panel:
● Mobeen Azhar, Presenter and Journalist
● Fatima Salaria, TV Executive
● Melvin Odoom, TV and Radio Presenter

Co-founder of Soho Media Club, Jaisica Lapsiwala, said, “This is Soho Media Club’s second edition of the BE YOU Festival and it’s back with a bang! Along with covering topical themes
and bringing inspiring speakers to the stage for panels, interviews, workshops and a Festival Party, we are building an active community of talented changemakers to move the dial and
change the narrative of the media industry.”

BE YOU is designed to spark honest conversations about the whole slate of film, TV and multimedia cultures, including the visible and hidden challenges of diversity, inclusion, belonging
wellbeing, having your voice heard and inspiring and nurturing this and future generations of talent.

A dynamic mix of over 200 industry heavyweights and fresh newcomers come together in Soho to passionately discuss the challenges of media culture and celebrate successes. Everyone attending is encouraged to participate in frank discussion, get stuck into candid conversations, share ideas and express themselves, so that attendees leave feeling empowered and armed with ideas, inspiration and contacts.

BE YOU takes place on 13 July 2023 in Soho, London. More information and tickets are available via the Soho Media Club website.

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