Round up of this week’s ‘must do’ arts, exhibitions and events.
West Africa: Word, Symbol, Song
The British Library
Fri 16 Oct 2015 – Tue 16 Feb 2016 *closing soon*
An exhibition of literature and music – from the great African empires of the Middle Ages to the cultural dynamism of West Africa today. It is a unique insight into a profound and engaging literary culture with centuries-old written heritage existing alongside ancient oral traditions.
Fascinating stories from the region’s 17 nations show how West Africans have harnessed the power of words to build societies, drive political movements, sustain religious belief and fight injustice.
group discount available for groups of 6 or more buying full price tickets.
Inquiries: +44 (0)1937 546546
The British Library
96 Euston Road
London NW1 2DB
Opening times and visitor information
Real News Comedy Show
The Performers House
10th February 2016
Pulling no punches, it’s Question Time with a team of razor sharp comics reviewing the big stories of the week. WItty banter crosses swords with cutting comments. Is no subject safe!
The Performers House
123 Green Lanes
Haringey N16 9DA
Love Sax and all that Jazz2 (DA MANS DEM)
13th February 2016 *limited run*
The hit comedy stage play by Alan Charles now in its 4th year is back for a one-off valentine’s performance before embarking on its North American tour in 2016. Love Sax and all that Jazz 2 (DA MANS DEM) addresses those old age questions: What do men want? Why do men cheat? and What defines a man? Laugh, be uplifted and be entertained by this popular family comedy.
The cast includes; Lloyd Reid, Adrian Bettton, Courtney Hoilett & Angela Blake.
Tickets Adv£15 Door £17.50
NTCG 370 Lee High Rd, London, SE12 8RS
The Kit de Waal MA Scholarship
Deadline 15 February
Here is an incredibly rare opportunity for a fully funded MA scholarship for creative writing. The Kit de Waal Scholarship is offering one aspiring writer the chance to study creative writing for free at Birkbeck University‘s Department of English and Humanities. The scholarship is targeted at talented writers from disadvantaged backgrounds.
The Birkbeck MA programme does not require a first degree. To be eligible for this award you need to demonstrate that you are a committed and talented writer and have no other means of affording the fees for the MA degree.
The scholarship is the brainchild of Kit de Waal, the award-winning British author of My Name is Leon. Deadline is 15 February 2016
Details on how to apply are here online
The Shooting Starz Bravery Awards 2016
For the bravery of the young living with Sickle Cell & childhood stroke
Saturday 18 June 2016
The Sickle Cell and Young Stroke Survivors charity (SCYSS) are holding a special award’s night to motivate and reward young Sickle Cell patients. They will be receiving special bravery awards. The Parents and carers will also be recognised for their all-important supporting roles.
The night includes a five-star three course meal, a host of entertainers and the Shooting Starz Trophy awards. This will be a fun, glamourous night for all and one for the young people to remember.
Bookings online (eventbrite)
London W1H 7EH GB
Bare Lit Festival
26 – 28 Feb 2016
Betsey Trotwood and Freeword Centre London.
The first UK festival dedicated to black and minority-ethnic writers debuts over three days in Farringdon, London. Writers include the celebrated Sudanese-born novelist Leila Aboulela, winner of the Caine prize for African writing, Courttia Newland, author of Snakeskin and co-founder of the event, Jane Yeh, Selina Nwulu, Zen Cho and others.
The Festival will cover a variety of genres including fiction, poetry, politics and sci-fi/fantasy.
Donations and entry perks starting at £1and all in a good cause here.
David Rodigan’s Ram Jam London
Friday 26th Feb Saturday 27th Feb 2016
Love reggae, love David Rodigan. He hosts a special evening joining the dots across all the UK sounds. Taking it back to the roots before bringing it right up to date.
Ticket from £20
Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom
National Theatre Lyttelton Theatre
26 January 2016 – 18 May 2016
Chicago, 1927. In a recording studio on the city’s South Side, a battle of wills is raging.
Ma Rainey, Mother of the Blues, uses every trick in the book to fight her record producers for control of her music. Hardened by years of ill-treatment and bad deals, she’s determined that ‘Black Bottom’, the song that bears her name, will be recorded her way.
But Levee, the band’s swaggering young trumpet player, plans to catapult the band into the jazz age. His ambition puts them all in danger.
Inspired by the real-life Blues legend and infused with her music, August Wilson’s play speaks powerfully of a struggle for self-determination against overwhelming odds.
Sharon D Clarke plays Ma Rainey.
Tickets £15, £28, £34, £39, £50
Saturday evenings: £15, £28, £39, £44, £55
National Theatre, South Bank
London SE1 9PX
Box Office 020 7452 3000
Artist and Empire
25 November 2015 – 10 April 2016
Tate Britain: Exhibition
In 21st century Britain, ‘empire’ is highly provocative. Its histories of war, conquest and slavery are difficult and painful to discuss but its legacy is everywhere and affects us all. The show raises questions about ownership, authorship and how the value and meanings of these diverse objects have changed through history, it also asks what they still mean to us today.
Adult £14.50 with donation £16.00
Concession £12.70 with donation £14.00
No booking fee for this exhibition
Under 12s go free (up to four per parent or guardian)
Family tickets available (two adults and two children 12-18 years)
To book TateTickets
Visit Jimi Hendrix’s Mayfair Home
Handel & Hendrix in London
10 February 2016 Advanced booking available
The flat at 23 Brook Street, Mayfair is to open as a permanent museum for the public to visit from 10 February 2016. The Mayfair apartment has undergone a £2.4m restoration with the help of money from the Heritage Lottery Fund and private donors. Hendrix bought the third-floor flat in 1968 at a time when he was considering the next phase of his career and that summer he released his Electric Ladyland LP.