Thursday 3rd May 2012
The contribution of black actors and musicians throughout Britain's theatre history has been revealed in a charity-funded film produced by young people.
Margins To Mainstream: The Story Of Black Theatre In Britain, produced by 20 youngsters from London and Birmingham, examines the history of black British theatre through interviews and unseen footage.
The hour-long documentary film features black actors, producers and playwrights who have contributed to the British theatre tradition, including playwright Courttia Newland, actor Javone Prince, actor playwright and broadcaster Kwame Kwei-Armah and director Patricia Cumper.
The film looks at landmark performances and highlights the struggles and triumphs faced by black actors in British theatre.
It has been produced as part of a youth project helping participants to develop skills in media and film-making and funded by the Heritage Lottery Fund, and Notting Hill Methodist Church, and led by the Octavia Foundation, in London, and Nu Century Arts, in Birmingham.
Gabrielle Tierney, head of community initiatives at the Octavia Foundation, said: "Our young film-makers are always looking for new opportunities to train and flex their media muscles. We have a history of supporting talented young people to tell untold stories, and the story of black theatre in Britain is most certainly a hidden gem."
Margins To Mainstream will be premiered at the Royal Court Theatre, in London, on May 11 followed by a question and answer session with some of the young film-makers and contributors.
It will then be screened in London and Birmingham, where the young film-makers are from.
To watch the film's trailer and to learn more about the Octavia Foundation's projects visit http://www.octaviafoundation.org.uk.