This October Contact presents an all-digital version of the Black Gold Arts Festival. Created by, for and with Black artists, the festival will feature workshops, discussions, talks and performances.
The festival theme for 2020 is Decolonising Theatre. The exciting programme brings new film commissions, a Black queer Manchester Garden Party and an explosive exploration of UK bass music culture from a female MC’s perspective. This vibrant and thought-provoking festival will also bring ‘how to’ sessions on creating performance art, storytelling across digital platforms and a practical voguing workshop with choreographer and dance teacher Darren Pritchard.
Opening the festival is performer, writer and theatre-maker Travis Alabanza. Star of their Total Theatre Award-winning solo show Burgerz, Travis has been cited as a singularly influential queer figure. This keynote speech will examine Travis’ experience of entering the arts as a working-class Black trans person. ‘Smashing Down the Doors’ will examine the notion that the arts need to nurture the ‘un-traditional’ in order to stay alive.
Meanwhile Highrise Theatre and Lil. Miss Lady bring a part grime rave, part drama taking you on a musical journey through UK Garage, Jungle, Sub-Low, Funky House and Dubstep. Discover what it means to be a female MC navigating her way through a male-dominated world.
Join an esteemed group of artists, academics and activists for a Symposium about Decolonising Theatre examining Black possibilities and radical artistic practice. Topher Campbell will deliver a keynote speech and Cheryl Martin will chair a presentation and Q&A with Selina Thompson.
Further highlights in the festival are Cheryl Martin’s One Woman – a binaural soundscape which will take audiences inside the mind of a woman living with mental illness; Stacy Makishi’s Live Art Social (Distanced Club) and Notes on a Mic Drop, a short film using poetry and movement to explore intimacy, colonialism and race.