Lenny Henry & Michael Buffong: Raising the Bar
We know, better than anyone, that telling the story of Black theatre isn't easy. Perceptions of what Black theatre is, or should be, focus on 'urban' or 'gritty' subjects, denying the breadth and depth of experiences, emotions and the diversity of lives and cultures in an instant.
In a forthcoming 10 part radio series on Radio 4 'Raising the Bar', Sir Lenny Henry talks to Michael Buffong and a host of luminaries from the world of theatre. What comes across starkly is just how little has changed in the 30 years since Talawa was formed. As Michael Buffong puts it:
“It always seems like covering the same ground again, or even going backwards ... You feel you are starting again and are still seen as somehow edgier than other productions. This, I think, is to keep black theatre in a box, to some extent; to identify it as something that is not mainstream.”