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GALLERY: Symbol of human rights visits Royal Shakespeare Company today

AN international symbol of human rights visited the Royal Shakespeare Company this afternoon.

Little Amal, a 3.5m puppet of a ten-year-old Syrian girl refugee, headed to the RSC as part of World Refugee Week.

RSC acting artistic director Erica Whyman said: "We were delighted to welcome Little Amal to Stratford-upon-Avon at Midsummer.

"This is such an important journey in World Refugee Week, and our community, including many displaced families who have recently settled here, will welcome this precious opportunity to Walk with Amal.

"Shakespeare wrote passionately about the experience of making your home in a new land, and his words will be one of our gifts to Amal.”

Starting in Manchester on 19th June, as part of the city’s now iconic Manchester Day parade, Little Amal’s journey, entitled New Steps, New Friends, includes visits to Stonehenge, the Liverpool Docks, Bradford, Leeds, Bristol Harbour, Birmingham, Cheltenham, Canterbury and London. Her journey ends on 27th June in Folkestone, Kent.

It takes three puppeteers to operate Little Amal: a stilt walker whose legs become Amal’s and who also animates her face, and two other puppeteers, one operating each of her arms.

There is a team of ten puppeteers, some from refugee backgrounds. The puppet is crafted from moulded cane and carbon fibre.

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