Little Amal Stops in St. Louis on Oct. 1 as Part of Her 35-city U.S. Tour

Little Amal, the internationally celebrated 12-foot-tall puppet of a 10-year-old

Syrian refugee girl will arrive in St. Louis on October 1 as part of her pic 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.

Little Amal will stop in St. Louis on Sunday, October 1, from 12:30-1:30 pm. at
River Overlook Stage, located directly across from the Gateway Arch grand staircase, at
50 S. Leonor K Sullivan Boulevard. The public is invited to cheer-on Little Amal at the grand staircase and on the ground directly under the Arch, and participate in this memorable, unique event that will celebrate the contributions of immigrants and refugees to our region and beyond. Saint Louis native, Dr. Philip A. Woodmore, COCA's Artistic Director of Voice and the Worship and Arts Leader of New Sunny Mount Missionary Baptist Church, has spent the last several months collaborating with a local and national team that includes the International Institute and the St. Louis Mosaic Project to create a dynamic event for St. Louis.

The STL Little Amal Mass Choir, an intergenerational choir established by Dr. Woodmore for voices of all ages to be heard and to share in unity of song, will welcome Little Amal to the Boulevard stage send her on her way as she continues her journey across the country. Performers from COCA Allegro, The Phil Woodmore Singers, the St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department Choir, The St. Louis Women's Chorale, The Muny, Opera Theatre of St. Louis, New Sunny Mount Music Ministry, COCAdance, and Studio Pointe will also participate.

Civic leaders will make brief remarks about St. Louis’ history and ongoing work of assisting refugees and immigrants settle into St. Louis and make lasting economic and cultural contributions.

“I wasn’t sure what I was signing up for when I was tapped to lead this effort, but once I learned about Little Amal’s origin story and talked with local experts at the International Institute and the

St. Louis Mosaic Project about our region’s long history of welcoming refugees and immigrants, I couldn’t wait to start planning an event that will engage the entire community,” said Dr. Woodmore.

“What a beautiful and unique opportunity to continue the important conversation about immigration in a city that has welcomed immigrants from around the world for 100 years,” said Arrey Obenson, Pres. & CEO of the International Institute. “We are so pleased to collaborate with Dr. Woodmore on this important event.”

Sponsors and artistic partners who have helped make this event possible include the Regional Arts Commission, Washington University, Greater St. Louis, Inc., the St. Louis Mosaic Project, the International Institute, Opera Theatre of St. Louis, St. Louis Shakespeare Festival, Sam Fiorello and Rebecca Messbarger, and Valerie Nelson-Mason.


About Little Amal

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.  Amal is inspired by a character in Joe Murphy and Joe Robertson’s play The Jungle, about a refugee camp in Calais, France. The Walk 2021 was a co-production with Good Chance Theatre.

Over nine weeks this fall, Amal will join 1,500-plus artists at more than 100 artistic events across

35 towns and cities. The nationwide journey will begin in Boston, MA on September 7 and culminate on November 5 in San Diego, CA.  Additional details will be available over the summer, and updated frequently, at Amal Walks Across America is produced by The Walk Productions in association with Handspring Puppet Company.