Amber James, Black Apron Entertainment and English Touring Theatre announce Children’s Children – a series of five short films, curated by Amber James, exploring the interaction of past with the present, and celebrating Black history.
Tristan Fynn-Aiduenu and Rikki Beadle-Blair direct five pieces performed by Gershwyn Eustache Jnr, Amber James, Kayla Meikle, Sule Rimi, and Khai Shaw.
‘Children have never been very good at listening to their elders. But they have never failed to imitate them’ James Baldwin
How much of our history do we carry? From the fields, across the waters and onto the streets; revolts become riots, rallies become tweets. This is the life. This is repeat. Uncovering texts from throughout history and the present day and presenting them for 2021, these films ask how much of the past remains in our present.
The series rediscovers the voices of black activists, poets, artists and real working people, across a period of more than a century. We conclude in the modern day after hearing from Sojourner Truth, Una Marson, Stanley Crooke, Desmond Pierre and Still Shadey.
Amber James said today, “These films were born out of two things really – rage and love. We’ve come together to create a journey of films that honour where we’ve come from, whilst being real about where we’re at. Black History, it’s a living breathing thing. Their stories are our stories, and ours will be our children’s – and that is both beautiful and terrifying.”
Amber James is curator. Her recent credits include Snowflake (Kiln Theatre), Vassa (Almeida Theatre), A Midsummer Night’s Dream (Regent’s Park Open Air Theatre), Troilus And Cressida, Titus Andronicus,Antony And Cleopatra (RSC) and A Streetcar Named Desire (English Touring Theatre). Her television credits include Vera, Ransom and Doc Martin.
Gershwyn Eustache Jnr’s theatre credits include Pass Over (Kiln Theatre) Small Island, Pinocchio, Home, Nut (National Theatre), Anatomy of a Suicide, A Profoundly Affectionate Passionate Devotion to Someone (Royal Court Theatre), The Royale (Bush Theatre) and The Comedy of Errors (Shakespeare’s Globe). For television, his work includes I May Destroy You, Small Axe, Britannia, Fortitude, Legends, Peter and Wendy and Run; and for film, The Yellow Birds, Second Coming and Starred Up.
Kayla Meikle’s theatre credits include Shoe Lady, Ear for Eye, Primetime (Royal Court Theatre), Vassa, Dance Nation (Almeida Theatre), All My Sons (The Old Vic), A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Jack and the Beanstalk (Lyric Hammersmith), Macbeth, Romeo and Juliet (National Theatre), The Taming of the Shrew (Arts Theatre) and All the Lives (Ovalhouse). Her television credits include Will, After Life, The Capture and Small Axe.
Sule Rimi’s theatre credits include Three Sisters (National Theatre), Glass! Kill! Bluebeard! Imp! (Royal Court), Sweat (Donmar Warehouse/West End), Measure for Measure (Donmar Warehouse), All My Sons, The American Clock (Old Vic), Love and Information, Desire Under the Elms (Sheffield), Barber Shop Chronicles (National Theatre, Australia, New Zealand), Mary Stuart, They Drink it in the Congo (Almeida Theatre), The Suicide (National Theatre), The Rolling Stone (Royal Exchange, Manchester/WYP/Orange Tree), TheOdyssey: Missing Presumed Dead (ETT/Liverpool Everyman), Bordergame (National Theatre of Wales), Othello (Fluellen Theatre Company), Muscle (Shock N Awe), and Serious Money (Waking Exploits). His television credits include Manhunt II, Black Earth Rising, Death in Paradise, Birds of a Feather Christmas Special, Strikeback, Unforgotten, Stella, DNN: Definitely Not Newsround, 4 O’Clock Club, Mistresses, Crash, Caerdydd, The Black Lion, Y Pris, Scrum IV. His film credits include Ashens & the Quest for the Game Child, Bad Fucking, The Adventurer: Curse of the Midas Box, The Machine, Elfie Hopkins and the Gammons, Daddy’s Girl, Starter for Ten, and Francis.
Khai Shaw’s theatre credits include Crongton Knights (UK tour), Little Baby Jesus (Orange Tree Theatre), The Suicide (Stratford Arts), Decades (Bridge Theatre Company), The Railway Children (Waterloo Railway Theatre), Daddy Cool (Shaftesbury Theatre), The Lion King (Lyceum Theatre) and Chitty Chitty Bang Bang (London Palladium). Screen credits include Bitesize Shakespeare (BBC), Casualty (BBC) and Meet The Adebanjos (MTA).
Rikki Beadle-Blair MBE is a writer, director, composer, choreographer, designer, producer and performer working in film, theatre, television and radio. Having written and directed 30 plays over the last 20 years along with several feature films, shorts and tv episodes and series, he has won several awards including the Sony Award, the Los Angeles Outfest Screenwriting and Outstanding Achievement awards. Rikki’s passion for encouraging creativity and business sense in other has led him to becoming a committed mentor to a great many writers, actors, composers and directors around the world.
Tristan Fynn-Aiduenu is a British-Ghanaian theatre-maker whose work aims to stretch the imagination of his audiences with his unique brand of storytelling. Tristan has directed at venues including The Young Vic, Albany Deptford, Theatre Royal Stratford East, and National Theatre. He is an Associate Director of Initiative.dkf and Playback Drama. He is an Associate Producer for The Melanin Box Festival and a reader for the Orange Tree Theatre. Fynn-Aiduenu was trained on the Stonecrabs Young Directors Programme and the Young Vic Springboard Programme, and is the winner of the 2019 JMK Directors Award.
The full series, co-produced by ETT and Black Apron Entertainment, is available to watch from Wednesday 24 February 2021 via YouTube (www.youtube.com/user/ETTonYTand Instagram (www.instagram.com/englishtouringtheatre