Curve announces plans for Black History Month 2022

Curve has announced a program of shows, events and free events in honor of Black History Month this October.

Led by black artists, the programme will celebrate the black community of Leicester and Leicestershire, providing entertainment and cultural experiences for all.

Black History Month festivities kick off at Curve on Saturday, October 1st, when Frantic Assembly’s Othello (co-produced with Curve) puts on a final show before embarking on a fall national tour.

On Saturday, October 8, Curve will be hosting Black History Month Community Day with free events and activities in the building from 12-5pm. Community Day will include children’s storytelling, spoken poetry, dance, live music and more, led by local Black artists and practitioners. All activities are free, but visitors are encouraged to book certain activities.

On Sunday, October 9th, a rehearsal reading of Winsome Pinnock’s “Taking Off” will be shared on Curve’s RR2 as part of Celebrating Plays of Excellence. Leave Take was selected by a panel including Leicester multidisciplinary artist Carol Leeming, new Curve board chair Sita McIntosh and director Ameera Conrad after an open nomination search for the most significant work written by black playwrights. Calls for local actors will be announced on Curve’s website in due course – for more information please email artistdevelopment@curveheatre.co.uk.

Ameera Conrad, who will guide the rehearsal reading, said:

“Leave by Winsome Pinnock is a fantastic play by one of the UK’s most prolific black writers. It’s an exciting opportunity to create a screenplay by an artist who has had a huge impact on British theatre. Leave is a beautiful An exploration of how we have to get out of things to find ourselves.

“Work like this is invaluable all year round – it makes us all more empathetic and open to each other, work like this breaks down the walls between different people’s communities, and I’m excited to be part of the community A small part. Curve’s Black History Month program.”

Friendship’s final act will be on the Curve on Tuesday, October 11th. Inspired by the 2020 #BlackLivesMatter movement, Stephen Hayward’s play explores difficult conversations around race and privilege, and the importance of standing up for friends at all costs.

From Monday 17th October to Tuesday 18th August, Apphia Campbell’s acclaimed Black is the Color of my Voice hits the Curve after selling out in the West End, Shanghai and New York. Inspired by the life of Nina Simone, Black is the Color of my Voice follows Simone’s journey from young piano prodigy to singer and civil rights activist, performing iconic songs live.

As part of the Theater’s Black History Month program, Curve will also feature free foyer performances by local black artists and musicians in Curve’s hit musical “Sister Act” from Monday, October 17th to Saturday, October 29th.

Beyond Leicester, audiences across the country can experience Curve and Birmingham Arena’s award-winning and critically acclaimed co-production The Color Purple as it continues its maiden tour in England and Wales. Thanks to the support of the Arts Council England National Lottery Fund, the tour visits six new cities from Tuesday 13 September to Saturday 5 November.

Curve CEO Chris Stafford and Art Director Nicola Foster said of Black History Month:

“This October, we are proud to be part of Leicester’s contribution to the global programme of Black History Month activities.

“As always, our 2022 campaign puts our local community first; a free community day kicks off this year’s campaign with a vibrant array of plays, musicals and dance.

“We are delighted to be partnering with Serendipity on this year’s Black History Month programme and we thank Arts Council England and Leicester City Council for their continued support.”

To find out more about Curve’s Black History Month, visit https://www.curveonline.co.uk/get-involved/black-history-month-22/

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