NOT BLACK AND WHITE Season Of Plays Presented At The Tricycle Theatre Runs October 8-December 19
Not Black and White is a three month season of plays to be presented by the Tricycle Theatre examining life and social issues in 21st Century London from the perspective of three leading black contemporary playwrights. Roy Williams, Kwame Kwei-Armah and Bola Agbaje will tackle the prison system, the mayoralty and immigration respectively in the Not Black and White season which runs from 8 October to 19 December 2009.
Not Black and White will open with Roy Williams' Category B directed by Paulette Randall. Followed by Kwame Kwei-Armah's Seize the Day, then Bola Agbaje's Detaining Justice directed by Indhu Rubasingham, all three productions will eventually play in repertoire. The Not Black and White season will be designed by Rosa Maggiora with lighting by James Farncombe and sound by Tom Lishman. Casting for all three plays will be announced shortly.
Nicolas Kent, the Tricycle's Artistic Director said: "Three years ago the Tricycle launched a four month season with a black ensemble company premiering three plays chronicling the African- American experience in the 20th Century. As we approach the end of the first decade of the 21st Century and, across London, black and Asian children outnumber white British children by about six to four, I thought it important and challenging to look at the society in which we live from the perspective of three leading black writers."
Previously the Tricycle has presented seasons of work covering issues such as the Bloody Sunday, Stephen Lawrence Inquiry and Guantanamo, as well as more recently Called To Account - the trial of Tony Blair and the hugely successful The Great Game: Afghanistan which completed a critically acclaimed season this Spring.
The Not Black And White season is sponsored by Bloomberg's ‘New writing for New audiences' programme.
Paulette Randall will direct the world premiere of Roy Williams' Category B, the opening production in the Tricycle's Not Black and White season. Running from 8 October until 19 December with press night on 12 October, Category B is designed by Rosa Maggiora, with lighting by James Farncombe and sound by Tom Lishman.
"No-one wants to go to a Cat B prison, no-one wants to come here, prisoners and screws alike."
Saul runs a tip-top wing - the screws love him for it, especially Angela. Prisoners follow his rules, and its all gravy. But Saul's number two position is vacant, new inmates are flooding in, so everyone's feeling the heat. Errol could fill the gap, but he's up for parole in 6 weeks, and now new kid Rio's rocking the boat. No-one wants to go to Cat B, but the world on the outside is a different story.
In 2008 Roy Williams' Days of Significance was presented as part of the Royal Shakespeare Company season at the Tricycle, where his plays Starstruck and The Gift both received their London premieres. His other writing includes Sing Yer Heart Out For The Lads and Baby Girl, both for the National Theatre, and Lift Off, Clubland and Fallout which all premiered at the Royal Court, the latter of which was televised by Channel 4.
Paulette Randall was last at the Tricycle directing Radio Golf where she has previously directed August Wilson's Gem of the Ocean, The Piano Lesson, Two Trains Running and King Hedley II. Her other directing credits include What's In The cat for Contact Theatre, Manchester and the Royal Court Upstairs, Funny Black Women On The Edge and Shoot To Win for the Theatre Royal Stratford East and The Amen Corner for Bristol Old Vic. As a television producer her credits include the series Desmond's for Channel 4 and The Crouches for BBC 1.
Category B is sponsored by The Kobler Trust.
Kwame Kwei-Armah TO DIRECT WORLD PREMIERE OF HIS LATEST PLAY
SEIZE THE DAY
Kwame Kwei-Armah has written and will also direct the world premiere of Seize The Day, which runs from 22 October to 17 December with press night on 2 November. Designs are by Rosa Maggiora with lighting by James Farncombe and sound by Tom Lishman.
"The symbolism of having a Black mayor! A city of 45% colour, should have a mayor of colour don't you think?"
Jeremy Charles has got the face to represent it - a well-spoken, good-looking Londoner, with an appetite for change: yes he can! He's sold his pitch on reality TV, but can he be the real people's candidate?
Playwright, actor and broadcaster Kwame Kwei-Armah is a member of the Tricycle's Bloomberg Writer's Group. He was last at the Tricycle in 2008 with Let There Be Love which was revived later that year after a sell-out run. His play Elmina's Kitchen, the first in Kwei-Armah's triptych for the National Theatre, was nominated for an Olivier Award and won him the Evening Standard Award for Most Promising Playwright. Elmina's Kitchen, which transferred to the West End, was followed in 2004 by Fix Up and in 2007 Statement of Regret.
Seize The Day is sponsored by The Kobler Trust.
Indhu Rubasingham TO DIRECT WORLD PREMIERE OF BOLA AGBAJE'S
Indhu Rubasingham will direct the world premiere of Bola Agbaje's Detaining Justice which runs from 25 November - 15 December with press night on 30 November. Designs are by Rosa Maggiora, lighting is by James Farncombe and sound by Tom Lishman.
Justice is locked in a cold dark cell, his asylum application pending. His sister Grace would like to help, but has been told to leave it in God's hands.
Government Prosecutor Mr Cole has an infallible reputation for successful prosecutions - however he has had a change of heart - and job. His first case is for the defence of Justice - but in his new role is Cole the man to help? The cloud of recession looms, unemployment rises, and the fight to remain is tougher than ever.
Bola Agbaje's debut play Gone Too Far was performed at the Royal Court in 2007 and as well as a nomination for the Evening Standard Most Promising Playwright Award, won the Olivier Award for Outstanding Achievement. In 2008 her second play, In Time, opened the Tiata Delights season at The Almeida Theatre. Most recently she wrote Anything You Can Do for Soho Theatre.
Indhu Rubasingham was co-director with Nicolas Kent of the Tricycle's The Great Game: Afghanistan season. Previously for the Tricycle she has directed Fabulation and Starstruck. Her other directing credits include Another America: Fire - an opera presented as part of the PUSH04 Season and Chain Play II both for the Almeida, Wuthering Heights for Birmingham Rep, Free Outgoing, Sugar Mummies, Lift Off and Club Land all for the Royal Court, Pure Gold for Soho Theatre and Heartbreak House for Watford Palace Theatre.
Detaining Justice is sponsored by The Kobler Trust.
Tricycle Theatre Art Auction
Over forty artists and collectors, including Norman Ackroyd, Frank Bowling, Pippin Drysdale, Mary Fedden, Antony Gormley, Nigel Hall, Maggi Hambling, Ken Howard, Patrick Hughes, Anita Klein, Leon Kossoff, Howard Morgan, Paula Rego, Kevin Sinnott, Ralph Steadman, Wendy Smith and Glynn Williams have agreed to donate their work to an exhibition of paintings, drawings, sculptures and ceramics which will be exhibited at the Tricycle Theatre from 12-18 October. This exhibition and auction has been set up to help fund the Afghanistan project and the Tricycle Theatre's future work.
Bids will be accepted on the Tricycle's website from 12 October with the auction taking place at The Portland Gallery, who are also sponsoring the event, on 22 October.
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Photo credit Patrick Fetherstonhaugh