Birmingham Events: Beyond Windrush @ The MAC

Caribbean dancing couple

Image Credit: The MAC

published: 17 March 2018

The MAC’s Beyond Windrush season commemorates the 70th anniversary of the arrival of the SS Empire Windrush. The SS Empire Windrush brought people from the Caribbean to the United Kingdom in 1948.

The events will highlight an era of change and of co-existing cultures, and visitors will enjoy a public programme of exhibitions, events, talks and debates from May to July 2018.

The season kicks off with the Phoenix Dance’s thrilling new dance piece celebrates the 70th anniversary of SS Empire Windrush’s arrival, bringing the first Caribbean migrants to the UK. Continue reading


The GAP Arts Project : Interviewees wanted for Children in Movement programme

The GAP Youth Programme

Image Credit : The GAP

provided by: The GAP
published: February 2018

Children in Movement is a Heritage Lottery funded project that aims to discover, record and share the stories of those who migrated to Birmingham when they were children or young people, from as far back as the 1930’s right through to those who have settled here in the last few years.

Why are we doing this?
The GAP is an arts organisation that supports young people to make sense of the world through creative and cultural projects. Our young members have expressed concern that many distorted narratives are currently circulating about immigration, and that the value of diversity in their city – of which they are so proud – is suddenly being questioned.

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Benjamin Zephaniah: ‘I’m almost 60 and I’m still angry. Everyone told me I would mellow’

Benjamin Zephaniah

Benjamin Zephaniah

source: The Guardian 
published: 25 August 2017 

Benjamin Zephaniah’s 1998 poem Carnival Days is a lyrical love letter to the Notting Hill carnival, where “We dance like true survivors / We dance to the sounds of our dreams.” Or, more accurately, it’s a love letter to what the carnival once was. He still supports the event, which takes place in London this weekend, and plans to be there on Monday, but reckons it has become less innocent, less spontaneous in the two decades since he wrote his poem. These days, even dreams have to be policed – and ideally sponsored.

“It’s become more corporate and – to some people this might sound positive – more organised,” he says. “Stalls have to pay a fee; sponsors get involved. People used to take to the streets and do it for themselves. They’d say: ‘I’ll sell some food on this corner; you sell some food on that corner.’ It was organised anarchy. There was no big committee. There was a group of people and that was it. Now, it’s all about liaising with the police, which for me takes away the spirit of us really taking to the streets.” Continue reading