Black Lives Black Words is a conversation held across continents | Madani Younis

It’s on us. It’s always been on us. From Claudia Jones to Michael X, from Frank Crichlow to Darcus Howe to Doreen and Neville Lawrence, there is a rich and fierce tradition of resistance that has defined the past century in this great city. 2016 was a significant year in the UK. Following the Brexit… Read More

Art doesn’t have the privilege of looking on as everyone else struggles: London’s Bush Theatre re-opens with Black Lives, Black Words

by Zahra Dalilah When Madani Younis stepped into the role of Artistic Director of the Bush Theatre in 2012, he became the first person of colour to run a theatre building in London’s history. Under no illusions as to just how radically things were changing, Younis began laying the foundations for what in 2017 has… Read More

Caramel queen or white man’s whore: #HashtagLightie, the play exploring the realities of modern mixed-race lives

by Zahra Dalilah Women and men of mixed heritage, especially black/white, are often called upon in media to provide an inoffensive face of diversity, a fetishized vision of exotic beauty or simplistically characterised as inherently confused halves of one thing or the other. The play #HashtagLightie – which recently sold out the Arcola Theatre, London… Read More

Interview with Lucian Msamati, the first Black Iago at the Royal Shakespeare Company

by Sabo Kpade One thing that tends to never change in past iterations of Othello are the central roles: Othello, the Black or “blackened” flawed general, and Iago, the scheming and racist subordinate. These characters have always been left intact, for their different races and ranks contribute to the strongest charge around which the entire… Read More

‘Blood’ Shows That There’s Room For Everyone

by Shane Thomas   From London to Baltimore, rioting often occurs as a consequence of the public making their voices heard. However, the aftermath often focuses on the damage done to property, rather than the damage done to people. Borne from the reductive and simplistic analysis of the riots in Britain in 2011, Emteaz Hussain’s… Read More

Prejudice, bias and convention: The problem for Equity and minority ethnic actors

by Paul Courtenay Hyu Actors, like any other profession, benefit from a trade union, which represents them in matters relating to work. The year I joined Equity, the actor’s trade union, in 1989, was the year that Miss Saigon opened in the West End and Jonathan Pryce was cast to play an East Asian part,… Read More

Review: True Brits, by Vinay Patel

by Sabo Kpade Until a criteria on who is British is agreed upon, the question “who is British?” may never be fully answered. Vinay Patel’s one-man play True Brits, set in the years between the 7/7 bombings and the 2012 Olympics, is the story of Rahul, a young British-Asian played with conviction by David Mumemi. Before… Read More