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The 2023 BE YOU
content programme 
Stay tuned. 

13 JULY 2023 | SOHO | LONDON

09.30 - 10.00 

Registration & Welcome 

Attend at HERE at Outernet

10.00 - 10.10

Attend at HERE at Outernet

Welcome to the BE YOU Festival

Tomasz Witkowski & Jaisica Lapsiwala, Co-founders, Soho Media Club  

Muki Kulhan, Chief Innovation Officer, XR Producer & Creative Technologist

10.10 - 10.45

Attend at HERE at Outernet

Agents of Change: Fireside Chat with Sir Lenny Henry

BE YOU Festival Headliner

Soho Media Club’s Resident MC, Muki Kulhan leads a dynamic discussion between Sir Lenny Henry and an industry rising star to challenge the status quo, compare and contrast generational experiences and explore what we can all do to accelerate positive change in media.

Sir Lenny Henry, Actor, Comedian, Singer, Television Presenter and Writer

Fauzia Boakye, Actress • Presenter • Content Creator • Researcher

Moderated by: Muki Kulhan, Chief Innovation Officer, XR Producer & Creative Technologist


Sir Lenny Henry

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Fauzia Boakye


Muki Kulhan

10.45 - 11.20

Attend at HERE at Outernet

Panel: Authentic, Inclusive Representation Matters -
Are We Nearly There Yet?

Authentic Stories & Representation

Seeing yourself reflected on screen and behind the camera can be empowering and uplifting. Historically however, the depiction of minorities within storytelling formats has been grounded in pervasive stereotypes and film and TV crews are represented by a global majority.   We’re at the start of a more inclusive industry but representation can still end up feeling quite superficial if not done in an authentic way, with the right crew and cast. 


This panel explores the concept of responsible & representative storytelling representation behind the camera, and on screen.  We ask our panel to draw on examples of how they are leading the change by breaking barriers, empowering new talent and attracting new audiences along the way.  


Get an understanding of where we are and where we still need to go and leave with practical tips for creating content which shines light on underrepresented stories and does it well.

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Angela Ferreira

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Emma Hindley


Angela Ferreira, Managing Director, Douglas Road Productions 

Emma Hindley, Lead Commissioning Editor, BBC Storyville

Debbie Ramsay, Commissioning Editor, Youth Strand, News & Current Affairs Channel 4

Moderated by: Annika Allen, Head of Diversity, Inclusion, and

Equity, All3Media


Annika Allen

11.20 - 11.55

Attend at HERE at Outernet


Does our industry offer enough opportunity for the deaf and disabled community?   Producer & Co-Director of Deaf and Disabled People in TV, Bryony Arnold;  Director Ted Evans and Creative Director, James Rogan come together to talk about the way forward for inclusivity in the industry and solutions to truly embrace the disabled community and creating equitable working environments. The panel will talk about the making of recent productions, including "Signs for Change", featuring Rose Ayling Ellis and "When Barbara Met Alan", written by Jack Thorne and Genevieve Barr and will focus on how the experience of working on these productions gave a new insight into how the creative industries can go about bringing all worlds together.   

Bryony Arnold, Drama Producer & Co-Director, DDPTV

Ted Evans, Director

James Rogan,  Creative Director, Rogan Productions

Moderated by: Pippa Considine, Associate Editor, Televisual

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Ted Evans


Bryony Arnold,


James Rogan

11.55 - 12.00

Attend at HERE at Outernet

ACT ONE: Spoken word

Aker Okoye, Storyteller and Student


12.00 - 13.00

Lunch Break and Drinks

Attend at HERE at Outernet

Flex Your Creative Muscle: The BE YOU Walking Lunch 

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 This is an optional walking tour! 

Meeting point POP 2 

We all recognise the importance of carving out time to be inspired, but   time and motivation can be major blockers when you are under pressure and feeling stuck. If you need some tips on how to reframe a challenge and are in need of new ways to plug more play and creativity into your working day, come and be part of this interactive workshop with one of the world's top comedy improvisers.


Join Improviser, Author and Co-Founder of Comedy Store Players, Neil Mullarkey on an insightful and fun walking workshop around beautiful Soho.   You'll walk away with techniques which use moments of mindfulness, improvisation and creativity to fuel innovation and joy! 


After all, in the words of St. Augustine, "There is nothing that cannot be solved by walking"


Neil Mullarkey, Actor, Writer and Comedian and Founder of Comedy Store

New Voices: Inspiring New Talent

13.00 - 13.25

Attend at HERE at Outernet

Inside the Creative Mind of Otto Baxter

In 2022 Sky greenlit The Puppet Asylum, the first time a major broadcaster has commissioned a project of scale from a writer and director with Down Syndrome. Filmmaker Otto Baxter, worked with his friends, BAFTA Winning directors Bruce Fletcher and Peter Beard, to bring his vision to life and create Puppet Asylum, a foul-mouthed, autobiographical comedy-horror-musical set in Victorian London.  We'll chat through how the project came about, Otto's process of creative genius, his unique perspective of the world and how allowing diversity of thought can deliver outstanding results. 


Otto Baxter, Filmmaker 

Peter Beard, Co-Founder & Creative Director, Unscripted, Story Films

Bruce Fletcher, Head of Documentaries and Executive Producer, Story Films

Moderated by: Ria Hebden, Television Presenter and Broadcaster

13.25 - 13.55

Attend at HERE at Outernet

Thaw that frozen middle: Stories from outside the M25

Join ScreenSkills beneficiaries from across the UK as we discuss mid-level career support, effective career pathways to encourage increased diversity in leadership roles and what you can do to help step up to more senior roles. 
Showcasing flagship programmes from across ScreenSkills’ Skills Funds, we’ll bring together voices from outside the capital to share their stories and offer advice.

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Jasmin John

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Karen Taylor

Jasmin John, High End TV 1st Assistant Editor & Assembly Editor

Karen Taylor, Line Producer in Film/ TV Drama & Children’s TV

Charanprite Dhami, Third AD in Film & TV

Moderated by: Ria Hebden, Television Presenter & Broadcaster

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Charanprite Dhami


Ria Hebden

13.55 - 14.20

Attend at HERE at Outernet

Interview: Funding, Filmmaking and Me - My Journey

We sit down with Jason Osborne, director of LOVE LANGUAGES; a short film made with the support of film funding.   Jason talks us through the process and what it means to be a recipient of funding.   Hear the hiccups and highlights of Jason’s journey and gain invaluable advice.

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Satmohan Panesar

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Jason Osborne

Jason Osborne, Director, Love Languages 

Moderated by: Satmohan Panesar, Commissioning Editor, ITV

14.20 - 14.55

Attend at HERE at Outernet

Interactive Q&A
Ask Me Anything

This is an opportunity for anyone, from industry veterans to new and rising talent, to hear industry experts share their personal career stories and then ask the panel for invaluable advice on navigating the industry, overcoming obstacles and making it.

Fatima Salaria, TV Executive 

Mobeen Azhar, Journalist, Radio and Television Presenter and Filmmaker

Melvin Odoom, Radio and Television Presenter

Moderated by: Jasmine Dotiwala, Inclusion & Equity Leader, Multimedia Broadcaster, Producer, Director & Reporter

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Melvin Odoom


Fatima Salaria


Mobeen Azhar

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Jasmine Dotiwala

14.55 - 15.00

Attend at HERE at Outernet

ACT two: Poem

Ronni Winter, Art Director

15.00 - 15.20                Break & walk to breakout sessions

Attend at HERE at Outernet

15.30 - 16.30

Choose Your 1 of 3 Breakouts:

15.30 - 16.30

Attend at Fremantle,

1 St Stephen Street

1. Career Corner: Carving Your Own Career Path

This career meetup tackles how to get into the notoriously difficult fields of TV, film and gaming. 


Learn about how different media sectors are converging, which roles are currently in-demand, what skills are needed and how to work your way up to that dream job (even if you don’t know what it is yet!)


Robyn Bailey

Robyn Bailey, L&D Manager, Streamland Media

Faraz Osman, Managing Director, Gold Wala

Bob Clarke, Founder and CEO, MAMA Youth Project

Leah Henry, Producer and Development Producer, Fully Focused Productions 

Moderated by: Roses Okhipo, Producer, Channel 4

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Bob Clarke


Leah Henry


Roses Okhipo

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Faraz Osman

15.30 - 16.30

Attend at The Forge at the Lower Third, Outernet

2. get savvy with your money : the Freelancer Financial Toolkit

The financial planning required of freelancers is wildly inconvenient and we all know that nothing can be done to make taxes fun.  The reality can be daunting and sometimes it's tricky to know where to start. However, whether you are just starting out as a freelancer or are an established freelancer in need of some advice, this unmissable workshop with former producer turned financial advisor - Emily Man will talk you through some of the essentials such as managing your cash flow, taxes and budget and planning ahead.   You'll receive tips and tools to take control of your finances, as well as an opportunity to ask our experts questions in our interactive "Ask Me Anything" session.

Emily Man, Associate Partner, St. James's Place Wealth Management

Ask Me Anything: Q&A

Luke English, Media Lawyer 

Fay Mohamed, Production Manager

Moderated by: Anne Morrison, CEO and Creative Director, Nevision 

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Emily Man

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Anne Morrison

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Luke English

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Fay Mohamed

15.30 - 16.30

Attend at HERE at Outernet

3. Digital first meets traditional broadcast:
New creators

Online platforms are a magnet for next gen creators who crave creative freedom, easy exposure and more reach. Are platforms such as tiktok and youtube now the go-to destinations for the next wave of creators and should traditional media be creating space for YouTube content?

Navi Lamba, Head of Development - BBC Comedy, BBC

Islah Abdur-Rahman, Actor, Filmmaker, Presenter, thecornershopnetwork

Jamie McHale, Strategic Partner Lead Media, Entertainment & Publishers, Pinterest

Moderated by: Vanessa Sawyerr, Director & Head of Talent, Get Stuff Done


Navi Lamba


Islah Abdur-Rahman

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Jamie McHale


Vanessa Sawyerr

16.45 - 19.00

Choose 1 of 2 streams:

- Wellbeing & Belonging - Attend at Streamland Media, Newman Street

- Creativity and Inclusive Tech - Attend at HERE at Outernet

16.45 - 17.10

Attend at Streamland Media, Newman Street

Wellbeing & Belonging

Attend at Streamland Media, Newman Street

Breaking Down Behaviours:
Curate a Culture of Belonging for Young Intersectional Identities

How can you broaden the lens of inclusion which values and supports the multifaceted identities of the team and their unique perspectives and experiences? Lukasz Konieczka gives insight into how to shape a winning culture.

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Lukasz Konieczka

Lukasz Konieczka, Executive Director, Mosaic LGBT+ Young Persons' Trust

17.10 - 17.45

Attend at Streamland Media, Newman Street

power to the people!  safe spaces & speaking out

A robust policy is just the first step to empowering employees to speak out -  what does it really take to make people feel fully supported and empowered in a creative role?  And what safety blanket is there for the high proportion of freelancers or contractors, who are often overlooked?


In this panel, we chat through how we can safeguard from bullying, encourage authenticity, inclusion and build all the good stuff in.  And if you are in an uncomfortable situation, our panel of experts will guide us through where to get help, how and what outcome you can expect.

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Emma Butt

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Jonathan Coad

Jen Smith, Interim CEO, Creative Industries Independent Standards Authority

Jonathan Coad, PR Professional and Media Lawyer, Coad Law

Zeb Chadfield, Founder, The Finish Line

Moderated by Emma Butt, Dubbing Mixer, ADR Recordist, ADR / Sound Editor

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Jen Smith


Zeb Chadfield

17.45 - 18.15

Attend at Streamland Media, Newman Street


Authenticity illuminates the path forward to live the life you want, but what does it take to stay true to yourself and be the person that dances behind closed doors?  This brilliant panel gives you the tools to be true to your authentic self and bring yourself to work. It might not happen overnight, but we’ll give some tips on how to get there and build a work/life balance that brings you joy and meaning.


Ramaa Sharma,

Ramaa Sharma, Award Winning Media Executive, Journalist and Executive Coach

Des Gayle, BAFTA Award Winning Producer and Founder, Altered Gene 

Frédéric Vallée-Tourangeau, Professor of Psychology, Kingston University

Moderated by: Rev Peterson Feital, Founder, The Haven + London & Award-Winning Theologian


Des Gayle

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Frédéric Vallée-Tourangeau


Peterson Feital

18.15 - 18.45

Attend at Streamland Media, Newman Street

Fireside Chat with richard parks

Richard Parks, former Welsh International Rugby Player, Award-Winning Author, Multiple BAFTA Cymru Nominated Television Presenter and Filmmaker

Moderated by: Sarah Burbedge, Consultant, Coach and Exec Producer


18.45 - 18.50

Attend at Streamland Media, Newman Street

ACT Three: Poem

Samuel Dusucces, Children's Scriptwriter, Lellobee City Farm

16.45- 17.20

Attend at HERE at Outernet

the ai epoch, or is it?

Creativity and Inclusive Tech

Attend at HERE at Outernet

Where is AI now, both in media and beyond? What tools are being used in the real world and what is coming next? Is Generative AI an existential threat, or a novel plaything? How does this impact creativity, are any jobs really safe?


We’ll explore these questions in what promises to be a lively and interactive fireside chat with two leading minds in the field, scientists. practitioners and futuri