Leighton House Museum is proud to be working with the Hands Up Foundation to present a series of films made by a young generation of Syrian filmmakers.

The programme, curated by award-winning director Soudade Kaadan, is an enchanting journey showcasing the talents of Syrian filmmakers despite the challenges they face in a country shattered by a violent conflict. With their movies, they are sharing with us the evolution of their lives before and throughout the war. We witness their suffering and their rise from the ashes to build a new life elsewhere.

I hope to share in this collection of films a feeling of love for our home country Syria, and an opportunity to voice Syrian talents through a deep reflection in cinematic language on our reality. Soudade Kaadan


6.30pm doors open
Complimentary drink on arrival, and the opportunity to explore the unique studio house of artist, traveller and collector Frederic, Lord Leighton.

7 – 9pm Films are screened in the beautiful and atmospheric artist studio space
TICKETS: https://events.handsupfoundation.org/cinema-for-syria/

£15 per ticket

Ticket proceeds are in aid of Hands Up Foundation


Soudade Kaadan is a Syrian director. She studied theatre criticism in the Higher Institute of Dramatic Arts in Syria and filmmaking in Saint Joseph University (IESAV) Lebanon. Her films have screened at several venues nationally and internationally and have received international awards.

Her first feature fiction film The Day I lost My Shadow was awarded The Lion of The Future award for best debut film in Venice Film Festival 2018 and has been screened in several festivals: TIFF, BFI, Busan and IFFR. Her recent short film Aziza won Sundance Grand Jury Prize in 2019.


The Hands Up Foundation is a young and innovative charity which was set up by four British friends who loved everything about Syrian culture and tastes. Hands Up is a registered charity in England and Wales that funds medical and educational aid projects in and around Syria.

Hands Up raises money and awareness through creative fundraising initiatives, including the Syrian Supper Club, Cinema for Syria and Singing for Syrians. The idea behind everything Hands Up does is simple and positive; gather people together, remind them of Syria’s rich culture and do something good. If you would like to get involved by attending Hands Up’s events or hosting your own, check our website atwww.handsupfoundation.org


Leighton House Museum is the former home and studio of the leading Victorian artist, Frederic, Lord Leighton (1830-1896). It is unique among the capital’s museums in combining an exceptional collection of Victorian art with the intimacy of a private home. The exterior of Leighton House gives little clue as to the treasures that lie within. The highlight of any visit is the extraordinary Arab Hall which reflects Leighton’s fascination with the Middle East where he travelled widely. This room was built between 1877 and 1881 to display his outstanding collection of 16th and 17th-century Islamic tiles and also contains mosaic floors, a gold mosaic frieze, set beneath a gilded dome, and a calming fountain.