In 1828, when slavery was still legal throughout Britain’s colonies, the African American actor Ira Aldridge became Manager of the Coventry Theatre.
Ira was the first black actor to play Othello. And only two months after he was introduced to West Midlands audiences as ‘A Most Extraordinary Novelty, a Man of Colour’, he was running the theatre.
He was not yet 21.
This event honours Ira Aldridge’s amazing achievement with a drama-documentary and a night-time procession to the site of the long-lost playhouse where he and the local community made history. With scenes, speeches and songs from Aldridge’s Coventry season.
Featuring leading professional actors alongside performers from Coventry’s youth theatres and community choirs.
‘Being a foreigner and a stranger are universal passports to British sympathy.’ Ira Aldridge, 1828.
Presented by Warwick University’s Multicultural Shakespeare Project, the Belgrade Theatre and supported by Coventry UK City of Culture 2021 Bid.
|Thu 17 Nov||7:00pm||Sold Out|