Channel 4 is to mark World Mental Health Day with a special music programme featuring three of Britain’s top Black artists: Che Lingo, Arlo Parks and Kojey Radical.

The musicians will each perform one of their own tracks, open up to each other about their mental health and share some of the personal stories that have inspired them to speak their mind through music.

Musician Jordan Stephens, the founder of the mental health movement #IAMWHOLE, hosts the programme, featuring intimate performances and candid discussion with the artists. The programme will give a rare platform for the artists to talk openly about mental health, music and how they have navigated a year marked by pandemic, pain and protests.

Jordan Stephens comments: “Our intention is to shed light on mental health from the perspective of cultures not often centred in the conversation. This is not about shoving a load of Black faces into a TV spot during the one gracious month of blackness that our calendar so kindly offers, just to tick a diversity box. This is about providing space for silenced communities.”

The programming for both on-air and online will be produced by Spirit Studios for Channel 4. Matt Campion is exec producer for Spirit Studios. The programme is ordered for Channel 4 by Sarah Lazenby, Head of Features & Formats.

Sarah Lazenby, Head of Features & Formats, Channel 4 comments: “2020 sucks. I defy anyone to have not felt unsettled by the last few months. Speaking up and listening to each other has never felt more essential. Jordan and Spirit Studios have been highlighting the importance of open conversation around mental wellbeing for the last four years through  IAMWHOLE, and for some time we have been discussing the right concept that could bring The Whole Truth alive on-screen. We’re privileged to have made this ambition a reality with Che, Arlo and Kojey – three outstanding artists whose music and words are imbued with passion, pain and poignancy – to mark this unforgettable year.”

Matt Campion, Spirit Studios comments: “Our mission has always been to create content that resonates with young audiences and drives change. This show is a big step towards achieving that goal. The Whole Truth is a first of its kind, using music to empower and deliver a message, while tackling real life agendas.”

The Whole Truth airs Friday 9th October and across 4Music and Channel 4’s online platforms this month.

Jon Creamer

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