Tickets: FREE
Coventry City Centre / Online
Until Sat 11 Sep 2021


Fri 10 Sep 2021 to Sat 11 Sep 2021
Coventry City Centre / Online
Duration: 24 Hours

Selected Performances only; please see below.

How do we understand and celebrate the chapters and mysteries of our lives? What keeps us going in tough times and where do we find hope?

From Friday 10 to Saturday 11 September, you're invited to experience Faith

This major co-production between Coventry City of Culture Trust and the Royal Shakespeare Company explores these big questions through the beliefs of people of faith, and of non-religious world views, through music, theatre, installation and ritual.


Discover the ingredients to a good life as you follow a range of cook-along videos online while an invited audience of Faith and Community Leaders meet to share food and engage in discussion about how faith shapes their lives.

The five recipes we'll be sharing on Friday evening can be found here.

Make sure you follow our Facebook page to get involved.


Faith centres and spaces across Coventry will open their doors for an Open House, sharing more about their beliefs, practices, and work in the community.

Four new plays directed by RSC Deputy Artistic Director Erica Whyman; The Messenger, The Return, The Arrival, and Generation 20, will be performed through the streets of Coventry with the stories of important moments in everyday life – from birth to love to death. All tickets for the plays are sold out.

If you’re not able to attend Faith in person, or just want to explore more, all performances will be live streamed with BSL and captioning on our Facebook page and YouTube channel.

A series of pop-up performances and installations, inspired by the themes of Faith and created by City Voices, will take place across the city for audiences to experience throughout the day on Saturday.

Faith will culminate in an extraordinary Ceremony of Light in Millennium Place as a pledge to move forward together and respect our differences. Tickets are still available to attend in person.

All of the events are free.

Co-produced by Coventry City of Culture Trust and the Royal Shakespeare Company with City Voices and Coventry faith communities

Supported by Backstage Trust and David and Sandra Burbidge

The City Voices programme was devised and created by Theatre Absolute in 2019, in partnership with Coventry City of Culture Trust

Live Performances

Faith: Open House

A huge variety of faith centres across the city are opening their doors, or bringing what they do to Swanswell Park, from 9am on Saturday 11 September. Expect exhibitions, performances, and opportunities to experience faith practices and to learn about different beliefs and traditions. There is no expectation to engage in a certain way, you are welcome just to visit and enjoy these incredible spaces you may not have visited before.

Faith: City Voices Creates

Performances, poetry, prayer and installation exploring themes central to Faith, created by writers engaged in the City Voices programme who we’ve worked with on Faith. City Voices is a writing programme supporting professional and non-professional Coventry writers creating work to be included as part of Coventry City of Culture major events.

Faith: The Messenger

A play by Chris O’Connell

Beginning on Eagle Street, meet Baani, who faces the imminent death of her mother. Tasked with getting a message to her father, she agrees to meet him at Pool Meadow bus station, but this is a journey she has never made before. Baani is resourceful and very good company, but will anyone help her find her way?

Saturday 11 September, 10.30am & 3.30pm. The 10.30am performance will be live-streamed on the Coventry City of Culture Facebook page and YouTube channel.

Faith: The Arrival

A play by Chinonyerem Odimba

The Arrival follows a young Sikh couple as they try to find a new home. Join us on a journey through the city centre in 1978, starting in Broadgate and ending at the Belgrade Theatre. Taking in Lady Godiva, two-tone and the importance of a good Ruby Murray, The Arrival is set against a backdrop of racial violence but told with humour and resilience, asking us to question what are the ingredients for a good life?

Saturday 11 September, 10.30am & 3.30pm. The 3.30pm performance will be live-streamed on the Coventry City of Culture Facebook page and YouTube channel

Faith: The Return

A play by Chris O’Connell

Taking place on the cathedral steps, two old friends meet after almost 40 years. Seeing both each other and the Coventry they love through very different eyes, the piece explores whether it is possible to betray a city, and if so, whether it can forgive you.

Saturday 11 September, 12.30pm & 5.30pm. The 12.30pm performance will be live-streamed on the Coventry City of Culture Facebook page and YouTube channel.

Faith: Generation 20

A play by Chinonyerem Odimba

Generation 20 follows the grandson of the couple from The Arrival, as he and his friends discover that someone they care about has gone missing. You will be led on an odyssey around hidden corners of north Coventry, as they try to find him and come to terms with recent upheaval. Generation 20 is a spirited celebration of the imagination and humanity of young people.

Saturday 11 September, 12.30pm & 5.30pm. The 5.30pm performance will be live-streamed on the Coventry City of Culture Facebook page and YouTube channel.

Faith: Ceremony of Light

Faith closes with a Ceremony of Light in Millennium Place. In this stunning and poignant moment, we will light 500 flames to create a final tapestry of lights in the city centre.


Faith: An Introduction from director Erica Whyman

Ribbon Installation

Theatre designer Tom Piper, famed for his poppy memorial at the Tower of London, Blood Swept Lands and Seas of Red, will create an evocative visual representation of the existing ties and connections between the different faith groups. Faith communities across Coventry will join together physically, with Coventry’s places of worship set to be tied together with Coventry blue ribbons - a nod to the city’s silk industry - creating a beautiful temporary tapestry through the city. Coventry-based composer Sayan Kent (Maggie May, Liverpool Royal Court, Calcutta Kosher, Kali Theatre) will compose an original score to accompany the whole project.

Creative Team

Created in collaboration with RSC and local community leaders and their faith groups
Writers Chris O’Connell, Chinonyerem Odimba and City Voices
Director Erica Whyman
Designer Tom Piper
Composer Sayan Kent
Design Associate Adrian Rees
Costume Associate Chloe Fundak
Textile Artist Laura Nyahuye
Associate Director Jennifer Davis
Senior Producer Jon Davis
Producer Susanna Roland
Engagement Producer Remi McKenzie
Digital Producer Katherine Jewkes
Dramaturg Becky Latham
Sound Designer Mike Beer
Associate Sound Designer Ian Bernard
Director Facilitator Frankie Robson

City Voices Writers
Wes Finch
Christine Foxon
Lisa Franklin
Kim Hackleman
Alexandra Marie Johnson
Josh Leach
Navkiran Kaur Mann
Adriana Mourelle
Jaspal Singh
Jack Tafaro

What does faith mean to you?

We asked the cast and company of our four performances to tell us more about the things they have faith in. 

Access information

  • Audio described
  • BSL interpreted

Physical Access

You will be walking and standing for an hour, please wear comfortable footwear.

The live shows will be performed outdoors so please where appropriate clothing for all weather.

The live shows start and finish in different locations so please allow appropriate travel time at the end of the play.

You will wearing wireless headphones for the live show if these are suitable for you.

If you have any specific access requirements please email [email protected]

Accessible Shows

Faith: The Return - 12.30pm
BSL Interpreted
Audio Described
Physically Accessible

Faith: The Return - 5.30pm
Audio Described
Physically Accessible

Faith: Generation 20 - 5.30pm
BSL Interpreted

Faith: Ceremony of Light - 7.45pm
BSL Interpreted
Audio Described
Physically Accessible