8 October 2008
SATURDAY OCTOBER 4 marks the start of Black History Month and Southwark Council will be hosting a series of events in the local community throughout October and beyond.
Southwark's theme for 2008's event will be The Journey - past present, future. Having celebrated The programme of dance, theatre, music,film, talks, walks and exhibitions will all work to this theme, celebrating the achievements of the African and Caribbean community has made Southwark and the whole country and looking forward to the contribution it will continue to make.
The month-long feast of entertainment and education gets underway with a whole day of celebrations at the Damilola Taylor Centre. Local artists, educational organisations and community groups will host stalls, giving visitors the opportunity to wander around and learn all about the rich history of the area's black communities.
The event continues with a showcase of local talent featuring youth projects from around the borough and hosted by Thomas Dadson of Tribute Trust.
There will be performances from drummers from the Tribute Trust, Children of Zion and Exodus Dance Companies, the Recycled Teenagers from Carl Campbell Dance Company 7, poet and singer Khadijatou Doyneh and one of the UK's leading historians Steve Martin.
If all that entertainment makes you hungry, some mouth watering homemade Caribbean cuisine will be provided direct from the kitchen of C & C Caterers.
Following the launch, there will be events taking place all over Southwark on a daily basis. In addition to the various cultural events, libraries throughout the borough will stage talks, workshops and readings of black writing
One of the highlights of the month will be a film festival, running from October 9 to October 28. A series of short films and documentaries will be shown covering a range of social and political issues in and around Black History Month.
The screenings will be hosted by filmmaker and theatre director Amani Naphtali who will lead a question and answer session with filmmakers and audiences following each show.
The screenings at the Peckham Multiplex on Peckham Rye Lane include The Maafa on October 9. This two-hour documentary deals with some of the myths surrounding British slavery, the African resistance and the politics of the bicentenary commemorations.
Another highlight will be a special showing of Music is the Weapon on October 23, an acclaimed documentary by legendary Afrobeat musician Fela Kuti. The festival also features two collections of short films from established and up and coming directors on October 14 and October 28.
To book tickets through Peckham Multiplex telephone 0870 0429 399 or visit in person.
Black History Walk
On Sunday October 19, Steve Martin takes visitors on an entertaining and informative tour around the history of the black community in Southwark.
Starting at 2pm at The Cuming Museum on Walworth Road, the tour will take in several interesting and unusual venues, crucial to the history and development of the community.
These include: the Walworth Road home of nineteenth century black radical William Davidson; Spurgeon's Tabernacle in Walworth Braganza Street; Kennington Common, scene of black involvement in the 1848 Chartist riots; St Mark's Church, the site where radical preacher Robert Wedderburn is believed to have spoken; and The Oval cricket ground where Martin will tell the story of Andrew Watson, the first black international footballer.
All in all, it promises to be a rich and illuminating day for everyone involved. The walk is free and open to all.
Poetry Slam: Black History Month Finale
The month will close with a poetry slam at Peckham Library on October 30. Slam poetry mixes poetry, preaching and rap in an exciting live format.
The event is open to anyone who thinks they can take on the borough's finest poets in what promises to be a dynamic and entertaining evening and a fitting finale to a month showcasing all that is best about black culture in Southwark.
Entry is free but the sought-after spots in the competition are expected to go fast. Anyone interested in securing their place should contact Janett Plummer at email@example.com or call 07814 451 938.
For further information, visit: http://www.southwark.gov.uk/DiscoverSouthwark/EventsSection/blackhistorymonth/
Photos courtesy of the Cuming Museum
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