LONDON – Talawa Theatre Company, the UK’s leading Black theatre company, and Birmingham Repertory Theatre have announced a major new collaboration which will see the two partners developing an artistically ambitious body of work which will play in Birmingham, London, and nationwide. Black Joy, a season of new work by Black creatives and artists, will take to The REP’s three stages in 2021
The ambitious co-producing relationship, funded from Arts Council England’s Sustained Theatre Fund, will present a major musical production for The REP’s 800 seat The HOUSE and two new commissioned plays for the 300 seat The STUDIO and the 150 seat The DOOR. In addition, there will be six seed commissions for theatre makers of all disciplines plus training and work opportunities for off stage and technical teams.
In commissioning the season, Talawa and The REP are continuing to take a leading role nationally in foregrounding the work of Black people in the arts. Talawa Artistic Director, Michael Buffong said: “As a Black theatre company, now more than ever, we are determined and proud to be celebrating and shining a spotlight on great Black British talent, on and off stage, as well as ensuring that Black talents and creativity are at the heart of building back better. I’m so excited to be working in partnership with Birmingham Repertory Theatre, a brilliant theatre at the heart of a truly diverse city.”
The REP’s Artistic Director, Sean Foley said: “We are thrilled to be working with Talawa to create new work across our three auditoria, as well as develop the UK Black theatre artists of the future. This relationship forms a major part of The REP’s commitment to celebrating and representing the diversity of Birmingham and the UK across producing and technical departments and on its stages.”