A Shoe Full of Stars, by Omar Shahryar

Earlier this year Omar Shahryar devised an opera about terrorism in collaboration with secondary school students. Read more and watch the Channel 4 coverage here!

An opera about young people’s reactions to terrorism, as seen on Channel 4 News, is on track to win awards this year. ‘A Shoe Full of Stars’ by WRoCAH student Omar Shahryar (reading ‘The Composition of Opera for Young People’ at the University of York) was devised and composed with 20 secondary school students in Huddersfield based on their thoughts and opinions about terrorism and its effect on their lives.


The piece performed in Huddersfield and at the University of York and is being developed for a future tour to go along with an online resource to help young people, parents and teachers broach the difficult subject of violent extremism. Though entering the write-up year for his thesis, Omar will continue to collaborate with counter-extremism specialists from the Active Change Foundation and the Centre for the Resolution of Intractable Conflicts to develop the project, which has already won local volunteering awards for the amazing contributions by the young cast, and the University of York Student Union’s Enterprise and Innovation award for a crowdfunding campaign that raised the most money of any project at the University of York in 2018.

Watch the Channel 4 coverage here: