London Stories: Meet Desara

This week we find out a bit more about 24 year-old producer Desara who shares her mother’s story to England in London Stories: Made By Migrants.


How long have you lived in London?

We traveled from Albania to the UK when I was 6 years old. It was me, my 3 year-old brother and my mum.

Why did you want to take part in London Stories: Made by Migrants?

Coming from a family that did migrate and coming from a country where the population has migrated for many reasons, it’s very personal to me. I feel like we, myself and the storytellers, have a message to say. We’re one of a bigger picture, of a bigger story.
People migrate all the time and more often than not they do that for a better life. Naturally the media infiltrate things and can make it seem like immigrants are these blood sucking creatures who want to steal opportunities, for whatever reason, but this festival just brings together true stories and real people and there’s no gimmicks. It’s just real and it’s raw.

How have you found project so far?

I’ve really enjoyed getting to meet loads of people and the fact that not everyone is young. When you’re a young person in the [arts] industry, you always tend to be around people your own age or people in your line of work or discipline. The beauty in this is meeting people from all over the world, of all different ages and being inspired. I mean, we’re all egotistical at some point as an individual and we tend to be in our own little bubble and think that we’re the most important person in our lives and in our stories. But actually you get a very humbling sense when you hear other people’s stories and other people’s strengths and you feel so inspired and that is the most beautiful thing I have taken from this.

Have you found any challenges?

I guess part of it is getting my story down to 8 minutes! Mostly though, I think the challenge will be having to tell my story so many times to people I’ve never met and don’t have a connection with. I feel like it might even be like therapy for me (laughs). I accept my story and what my life is but what will be really interesting once the festival is over is to be able to say: I’ve said it now and  I’ve said it to people who I have no idea who they are or what their story is. It’s a positive challenge.

What do you hope audiences will take away from listening to you and the other storytellers?

I think it’s just an insight into someone’s experience without allowing prejudice or stereotypes to cloud your judgement. It takes a lot to start from nothing and, if anything, I hope audiences will take away the why and understand the people and their story.

> Find out more about London Stories: Made By Migrants, until 26 November

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