22 Oct The Bridge of Voices – All the world’s a stage
We also hope it will help the discussion of why things like diverse casting don’t translate into diverse audiences, how to translate the sell-out audiences of an Oliver Samuels UK tour into ‘mainstream’ theatre, gain black British plays their rightful place in the national canon, how to hire and train black critics, create equal opportunities for under-represented lighting designers, set and costume designers and stage managers, tackle under-representation at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe…
THE BRIDGE OF VOICES – “ALL THE WORLD’S A STAGE”
BLACK THEATRE IN THE UK FROM THE WINDRUSH ONWARDS
A NEW EXHIBITION IN SOUTHWARK
The great names of theatre, cinema and film star in a new exhibition – The Bridge of Voices – “All the World’s a Stage”. If you are interested in a career in the performing arts you may be inspired by the legacy of the UK’s early performers.
This multimedia exhibition relives the pioneering stories of the Windrush generation of black performers, directors and writers who helped create the face of modern British theatre.
Among those featured are Earl Cameron – who in 1951 became one of the first black actors to have starring role in a British film, Barry Reckford graduating from Cambridge University in 1950s went on to become a renown playwright and actor Femi Eubu who appeared in West End theatres in the 50s and 60s.
The exhibition forms the beginnings of a wider reaching project which will document and re-frame the history of African and Caribbean theatre in the UK.
Leading theatre figures Talawa Theatre Company co-founder Yvonne Brewster and actress Cleo Sylvestre, describe their careers on the stage and how their families and upbringing helped shape and support their vision.
The project is a collaboration between Bridge of Voices, Stefania Bochicchio Artistic Director at Draper Together and the International Theatre Institute (UNESCO), the world’s largest organisation for the performing arts (www.iti-worldwide.org).
The project is curated and written by Nick Awde, international editor of The Stage newspaper and director of the UK Centre of the International Theatre Institute (UNESCO), and established journalist Isabel Appio.
Nick says: “We hope the exhibition will help towards awareness of the importance of the contribution of black theatre. We also hope it will help the discussion of why things like diverse casting don’t translate into diverse audiences, how to translate the sell-out audiences of an Oliver Samuels UK tour into ‘mainstream’ theatre, gain black British plays their rightful place in the national canon, how to hire and train black critics, create equal opportunities for under-represented lighting designers, set and costume designers and stage managers, tackle under-representation at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe and our international festivals, under-representation in puppet theatre even…
“Whatever we do, however we do it, we will always be standing on the shoulders of giants: the Windrush theatre generation whose legacy continues to be as relevant today as it ever was.”
Commissioned by Draper Together’s Artistic Director Stefania Bochicchio as part of Draper Together’s October 2018 Black History Month events at Draper Hall, Southwark, London.
Draper Hall, 1 Howel Walk, London SE1 6TL
Nick is the International Editor of The Stage newspaper, Director of the UK Centre of the International Theatre Institute (UNESCO) and Director of the upcoming Other National Theatre. He is a long-serving critic and was head of The Stage Edinburgh team and awards jury for many years. The author or editor of more than 50 books, he is currently completing books on theatre criticism in the UK and the art of solo theatre. He is Artistic Director of London-based Debunk Theatre, and was a founder of the Morecambe Fringe and MelloFest festivals, and Theatreguide.london critics’ website. With Debunk and Desert Hearts Productions he works with Morecambe’s Alhambra Theatre and DIY West End Theatre Company, of which he is co-director. As writer or producer, theatre includes: Midnight (which has just premiered at the Union Theatre, Southwark), Khojaly: The Play, Shakespeare, A Doll’s House, Telescope, Red Riding Hood, Around the World in 80 Days, The Entertainer, and Andrew Lloyd Webber: The Musical. With Chris Bartlett he co-wrote Pete and Dud Come Again, The Tales of Malik-Mammed, and Little Fish (forthcoming).
Isabel is an established journalist and content curator/publisher with a focus on Social Inclusion in Education, Skills and the Workplace – primarily for young people and women. As Chief Editorial Director of the Voice Newspaper Group during its campaigning heyday, Isabel founded the Guide to International Women’s Month, The Guide to Black History Month and Britain’s first black broadsheet The Weekly Journal. Isabel’s wide range of high profile Private and Public Sector clients has included top Corporates, Local and Central Government departments, Universities and leading Charities.