Black Theatre Live

Trade fair

Overview

Black Theatre Live is a pioneering national consortium of eight regional theatres, led by Tara Arts. It is committed to effecting change nationally for Black, Asian & Minority Ethnic (BAME) touring theatre, through a sustainable three-year programme of national touring, structural support and audience development.

Black Theatre Live is a partnership between Tara Arts (London), Derby Theatre, Queen's Hall Arts (Hexham), Lighthouse (Poole), Theatre Royal Bury St. Edmunds, Theatre Royal Margate, Stratford Circus Arts Centre (London) and Key Theatre (Peterborough). It will shape a national programme of mid- and small-scale tours, and its structured audience development and community engagement programmes will include live digital streaming and cinema relays.

It receives Arts Council England, Esmee Fairbairn Foundation, John Ellerman Foundation & Ernest Cook Trust support to transform the national landscape of BAME touring theatre.

In the press

“How to solve the problem of touring… One initiative is looking at that problem from a very specific angle: how do we create more touring opportunities for black, Asian and minority ethnic theatremakers?” The Stage

"It has a big heart and the use of the Trinbago vernacular is richly effective"
The Guardian (on She Called Me Mother)

Contact

  • Email

    jonathan@tara-arts.com
  • Contact for touring

    Jonathan Kennedy

  • Contact at showcase

    Black Theatre Live for: HighRise Theatre, Tara Arts, Abreen Razia and PitchLake productions
    +44 (0)792 971 6512

Current productions

Big Foot

Big Foot by Joseph Barnes-Phillips, directed by Dominic Garfield. Presented by HighRise Theatre with Black Theatre Live & Stratford Circus Arts Centre.
(small-scale touring)

Love, life and masculinity meet head-on as Joseph tells his poignant coming-of-age story with a twist of the fantasy.

When the euphoric highs of teenage life in south London collide with terminal illness and family pressure, what is the right thing to do? Worrying about school, girls and status on the streets, Big Foot puts you in a teenager’s footsteps as Joseph stumbles and strives to find a path to the present day. 

With Guyanese folk stories, grime, roti and raucous energy, Big Foot is a funny and impassioned portrayal of becoming a man and the responsibility that comes with it. 

She Called Me Mother

She Called Me Mother by Michelle Inniss starring Golden Globe & BAFTA nominee Cathy Tyson.
(small-scale touring)

"When she gon come? I lookin at de people dem but I can’t see her. She a pretty lookin ting, she does stan’ out amongst these faces dripped in dissatisfaction…"

Evangeline is waiting; she has been waiting a long time. She waits for the Black Swan to glide through the station and show her a little warmth and kindness. She waits for a ticket home to Trinidad, the sun, the mango trees, and the street vendors selling curry. She waits for Shirley the daughter she let walk away all those years ago.

"I try not to tink about she too much, 'cause de pain dem thoughts bring it like a heard of buffalo runnin wild in a field, an I beneath dem foot."

Will her daughter ever return to her and can she ever forgive the Mother that let her go?

The Game of Love and Chai

Tara Arts presents The Game of Love and Chai by Nigel Planer, adapted from Marivaux’s French farce.
(small to mid-scale touring)

First performed in 1730, Marivaux’s The Game of Love and Chance is a classic French farce which pits two false servants against two false masters with, in the end, the two couples falling in love with their appropriate counterparts. Nigel Planer updates Marivaux’s version to a modern Indian family in England, employing Bollywood song and dance to great comedic effect.