On September 20th and 21st, 2023, Little Amal, the internationally celebrated 12-foot-tall puppet of a 10-year-old Syrian refugee girl, will be arriving in Pittsburgh as part of her epic 6,000-mile journey across the United States this fall. Throughout the two-month trek, which will span more than 35 U.S. cities and towns for 100+ events, some of the country’s most influential cultural institutions and artists will come together to greet Amal and add their unique color to the rich tapestry of America’s story.
Amal is inspired by a character in Joe Murphy and Joe Robertson’s play The Jungle, about a refugee camp in Calais, France.
During her stop in Pittsburgh, Little Amal will engage with various local organizations for a total of 4 unique “events of welcome” for Amal. All events are free and open to the public of all ages. Here is the lineup:
September 12 at 7-8:30 PM– Welcoming Little Amal: A Panel on Resettlement at the City of Asylum, Northside.
This program, presented in partnership with RealTime Arts and Jewish
Family and Community Services (JFCS), welcomes a panel of
resettlement experts and former refugees to explore the challenges
unaccompanied minors face in their journey to find a new home, in
preparation for a series of visits throughout Pittsburgh from Little
Registration is required at this link.
September 20 at noon — TAKE THE JITNEY TRAIN | Pittsburgh Public Theater and August Wilson African American Cultural Center event at the O’Reilly Theater (621 Penn Avenue).
September 20 at 6:30 PM — GHOSTS OF THE FURNACE | RealTime Arts event at Carrie Furnace (801 Carrie Furnace Boulevard).
As the sun sets, Amal stumbles upon Carrie Furnace, a hulking remnant of Pittsburgh’s steel-forging past. Odd lights flicker and music beckons-are there spirits here? Are they frightening or friendly? Help Amal discover others who once found themselves at the furnace, far from home. Registration is required at this link.
September 21 at 10 AM – I HEREBY DECLARE THAT I’M ONLY 10 | City of Pittsburgh Mayor’s Office (Office of Immigrant and Refugee Affairs) at the City-County Building (414 Grant Street).
September 21 at noon — PLAY IN PEACE | Office for Public Art event at the Great Lawn at North Shore Riverfront Park.
September 21 at 5:00 PM — IMAGINATION IS MY PLAYGROUND | Casey Droege Cultural Productions and Hatch Arts Collective event at Whitney Park & Playground (915 Wilkins Avenue, Pittsburgh).
Amal Walks Across America is produced by The Walk Productions in association with Handspring Puppet Company, which also guided Amal’s journey through her initial 5,000-mile walk across Europe in 2021 and all five boroughs of New York City in 2022 in partnership with St. Ann’s Warehouse.
Amal was designed and built by the Handspring Puppet Company of South Africa, creators of the award-winning puppets for the hit show War Horse.
Other nearby stops on Little Amal’s journey include:
- Philadelphia, PA: September 13-14
- Baltimore, MD: September 15-16
- Washington D.C.: September 17 and 19
- Pittsburgh, PA: September 20-21
- Cincinnati, OH: September 22
- Columbus, OH: September 22
- Akron, OH: September 23
- Ann Arbor: September 23
- Detroit & Dearborn, MI: September 24, 26, 27