At the age of 21, Black Panther Activist Fred Hampton had become chairman of the Illinois chapter of the revolutionary movement and had founded the ‘Rainbow Coalition’, a multicultural political organisation aiming to create social change. His activism would draw the attention of many, this including the FBI. His ability to inspire, something that hadn’t gone unnoticed. In 1969, an armed raid would tragically end Hampton’s life, however his legacy lives on. Taking on Hampton’s powerful story, writer and director Jesse Briton alongside Paula B. Stanic present Messiah.
Despite compelling performances, Hunger leaves a certain something missing. While there are moments of brilliance and a clear attention to detail, I want this show to leave a few more questions unanswered.
Making its premiere in the late 19th Century, Gilbert and Sullivan’s The Mikado had witnessed the 2nd longest run in the Savoy Theatre’s history up until that time period. At least 150 companies within Europe and America had produced the opera, showing a demand for the opera within the west. Based in Titipu, Japan, the idea was to satirise British Politics by ‘othering’; placing the narrative in a distant land – a concept we now recognise as highly offensive due to the creators’ lack of knowledge of Japanese culture. Cue the English National Opera’s take on the well known opera, a focus more so on the satirisation of politics and the upper classes.
On average, we speak roughly tens of thousands of words a day – a form of communication so embedded within our culture, it’s second nature and something we take for granted. Throughout time, words have formed, transformed, meanings have changed, they’ve taken on various meanings and have been taken from various cultures from around the world. Examining our relationship with words in his work presented at Certain Black’s Circus Circus Circus Festival, Jamal Harewood presents Word – a show aimed at word enthusiasts.
Friday night on the fringes of the city and someone’s having a party. It seems like a laugh, but not everyone’s having fun.
Gary and Nicky have been together since school. Gary’s going for a promotion so he can get his family out of their council flat and give Nicky everything she deserves.
Anjum and Mo are used to aiming for the best. And doing whatever it takes to get it. Gary’s sister Karen is more interested in having a life than fighting for any cause.
Mark is just…always there. And Victoria, Victoria wants to dance with somebody…
“It’s a good place. Keep watching and one day it’ll be ours.”
Written by Gurpreet Kaur Bhatti and Directed by Michael Buffong, A Kind of People ‘is set amidst a contemporary British community, and asks how it’s possible to get on when the odds are stacked against you’. Starring Richie Campbell, Thomas Coombes, Claire-Louise Cordwell, Asif Khan, Petra Letang, Amy Morgan and Manjinder Virk, the production will premiere at the Royal Court Theatre from 5th December and runs until 18th January 2020.
A story which needs telling and compelling in its unique way, Five Years is almost the powerful monologue it could be. While it may allude to some prevalent themes, Five Years leaves a lot untouched where it may have benefit from some fleshing out.
In a world where statistics show that one in three young people suffer from mental health issues, Reasons to Stay Alive challenges the way we visualise depression and anxiety, and shares honestly what an individual must overcome to find inner peace.
Can a place ever be home without a connection to family and roots? asks Rukhsana Ahmad’s current show Homing Birds. Focussing on Saeed’s story, we learn about the journey of many Afghan refugees forced to flee their homeland to avoid the dangers they find themselves confronted with; a heartbreaking repercussion of this being the disconnection of families and roots. How can one even begin to trace their own history having lost that connection? Homing Birds will play at Tara Arts from late November for a limited run; ahead of the performance, Rukhsana tells us more about what inspired her to write this story, how she approached creating the show and working with Kali Theatre Company to develop this from a scratch performance first shown in their War Play season in 2017 into a full length production.
Certain Blacks return with their latest festival, ‘Circus Circus Circus’, a mixed programme of live art, spoken word, jazz, opera and circus. An eclectic performance line up, Certain Blacks continue on their mission to showcase works exploring themes via various theatrical forms. Bringing his latest show London Art Collective to Rich Mix London on Saturday 9th November, jazz flautist, musical arranger and composer Rowland Sutherland’s show is an exploration of ‘spatial, galactic and spiritual jazz’. The evening will see him joined by a collective of talented musicians, Rowland tells us more about the show!