Canada’s Original Black Theatre Company Returns to In-Person Performances Following 50th Anniversary Celebrations
After 20 months of our stages being dark, Black Theatre Workshop (BTW) returns stronger than ever. Having celebrated its 50th Anniversary during unprecedented times, BTW is ready for year 50 plus 1 and looks forward to bringing you another season of great and innovative theatre.
Black Theatre Workshop will present the world premiere of a new hip-hop musical Black and Blue Matters by Omari Newton, directed by Diane Roberts and presented by the Segal Centre of the Performing Arts. Following the same timeline as Omari Newton’s acclaimed Sal Capone: The Lamentable Tragedy of (2013), Black and Blue Matters deconstructs the justice system and white supremacy, and directly confronts anti-Black racism and how it affects us all! Black and Blue Matters runs from February 20-March 6, 2022.
Pipeline by Dominique Morisseau, will be presented at Théâtre La Licorne, and will be staged in both official languages. Pipeline with its talented bilingual cast, explores questions about parenting, education, identity, and how equality of opportunity depends on social class and race. Pipeline runs from April 12-23, 2022 in English and April 26-May 8, 2022 in French.
This season Black Theatre Workshop is the Inaugural Co- Curating Company at the National Arts Centre English Theatre. BTW is grateful for this collaborative opportunity and looks forward to sharing Black stories with new audiences and on a national scale. The 2021-2022 season will include works such as, The Last Epistle of Tightrope Time, Black and Blue Matters and Calpurnia. The BTW curated contribution will end with the Artist Mentorship Program Showcase in Ottawa. This will mark the first national expansion of our AMP program, led by Program Coordinators, Mariah Inger and Warona Setshwaelo.
Black History Month School Tour is back. The program, led by new team member, Becks Lefranc continues BTW’s legacy of sharing stories with Montreal youth through theatre. This season, schools can book Makambe K. Simamba’s award-winning play, Our Fathers, Sons, Lovers and Little Brothers. Performed by the playwright themselves, young people will be captivated by a myriad of characters in a thought-provoking story. General audiences will also have a chance to catch this production at MAI from February 22-26, 2022.
Join them on January 29, 2022 for their annual Vision Celebration as they honour Black legacy, achievement and excellence in the community and in Canadian arts. For the second time, this will be an online celebration. Come one come all!
They recently kicked the season off with a digital presentation of our Poetry Jam, released on social media November 18, 2021. Another upcoming digital project is a new installation of their Belonging project to be released December 14, 2021. BTW has also partnered with the English Language Arts Network (ELAN), to offer a series of Arts Education Workshops. These virtual workshops given through the Artists Inspire Grants program will be available for any qualifying schools across Quebec and led by facilitators trained by BTW’s very own Artistic Associate, Lydie Dubuisson.
This season comes with a few changes in the BTW team. Tyrone Benskin, former Artistic Director and President of Board of Directors has stepped into the role of Interim Artistic Director.
“We are celebrating 50+1 years of creation and excellence. The challenges we are all emerging from because of world events, have brought about many changes in our lives, including here at BTW. I am happy to lend my experience to ensure that the vision and the efforts of our team not only move forward but continues to grow. I thank the BTW board and staff for their trust and confidence.” Tyrone Benskin, Interim Artistic Director