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Documentary tells health workers' COVID-19 stories

Published: 5 March 2021 at 13:52

A still from the film - image taken by Emily Gilhespy

Online ARU event will unveil clips from film alongside a panel discussion with contributors

A new documentary chronicling healthcare workers’ own personal experiences during the COVID-19 pandemic will be unveiled during an online event hosted by Anglia Ruskin University (ARU) on Tuesday, 9 March (5.30pm).

The documentary is being produced by ARU’s StoryLab research institute and the event – taking place a year after the World Health Organisation declared a global pandemic – will discuss how creative expression has helped healthcare practitioners find meaning in what has happened over the last 12 months.

Clips from the film-in-progress will be shown during the free public event, which will also feature a panel discussion with some of the healthcare professionals who have collaborated on the film, which originated from The Frontline project launched in April last year.

Dr Marques Hardin, Researcher at StoryLab, said:

“StoryLab set up an online archive at the start of the pandemic in early 2020. We invited health and social care professionals to submit their stories and experiences through any creative media. 

“We received over 85 contributions during COVID-19's first wave and decided to evolve the project into a documentary film. This subsequent and ongoing journey has given us all a highly charged and emotional insight into the world of our healthcare practitioners.

"We think there is an important value in the creative output of health and social care professionals during the pandemic. These creative narratives can provide deeper insights into their experiences and help the public gain a fuller understanding of COVID-19's impact on those who care for us."

To attend the free online event, please register at https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/covid-through-a-creative-lens-tickets-141848618035

Meanwhile, StoryLab’s Dr Fabrizio Galeazzi has been shortlisted for a British Association of Film, Television and Screen Studies (BFTSS) innovation award for the documentary Italia Terremotata,

The film, which was produced with Dr Paola Di Giuseppantonio Di Franco of the University of Essex, tells the story of an Italian town destroyed by an earthquake in 1980. The researchers used 3D technology to recreate Senerchia, and combined this footage with interviews with those affected, songs, poems, and archive material, including photos and newspaper reports.

Image is a still of the film, taken by Emily Gilhespy

Storytelling at ARU

StoryLab is one of six high-profile research institutes at ARU. Our researchers combine traditional storytelling methods with emerging formats and creative technologies such as 360 film, soundscapes and 3D data visualisation to create powerful, immersive experiences. Read more about StoryLab's work.