Theatre workers from all around the world are banding together to fight for social justice and democracy, amidst a changing global landscape. From Norway to Nigeria, Sudan to Brazil, India to America, black theatre practitioners are sharing their experiences and highlighting the need for change in the industry.
Juguero, the coordinator of the NORDIC Black Theatre open virtual class, spoke about the importance of a Black, Indigenous and People of Colour (BIPOC) approach to theatre, in order to reflect the different realities of black people around the world. The intention is to learn from one another, support one another, and to understand that there is no one black theatre, but many ways of representing a point of view – a black point of view.
The gathering saw diverse black theatre practitioners share their vast theatre experience, which made it clear that while there are several representations and different realities of black people in theatre, they all have one thing in common – they are all fighting for social rights, civic justice and democracy.
NORDIC Black Theatre’s first virtual open class featured a dramatic reading of American Playwright Alice Childress’ Trouble In Mind (in commemoration of International Women’s Day), a play that focuses on racism and sexism in American theatre, to celebrate the first African American woman to have a play professionally produced in New York. The goal is to deconstruct the white hegemony in culture, not to pit white people against blacks, but to fight for social justice, finish oppression, and show that there are different values and ways of thinking.
Founded in 1992, NORDIC Black Theatre promotes performances, discussions, and education, while NORDIC Black Xpress offers scholarships and technical training to diverse students with foreign origins in their families, supporting the appearance of great professionals in the artistic field.
Theatre workers worldwide are coming together to ensure that the show goes on, but not at the expense of social justice and democracy. As cultures continue to intertwine and evolve, black theatre workers are fighting for representation and equity, showing that there is no one way to represent a black point of view.