Local writing talent shines as New Black Showcase returns to the Belgrade Theatre

Coventry’s Belgrade Theatre will be serving up a double-bill of fresh new drama this November with the return of its New Black Showcase on Wednesday 13 and Thursday 14 November.

Now in its sixth year, the showcase was set up to provide a public platform for plays emerging from the Belgrade’s Critical Mass programme, a ten-week course for new playwrights from Black, Asian, Minority Ethnic and Refugee backgrounds.

Run in partnership with Euphoric Ink, the free, ten-week course offers up to twenty participants a chance to hone their skills and share their writing in a supportive setting, with the aim of nurturing local talent and championing underrepresented stories. Previous participants have included Liz Mytton, whose debut play Red Snapper enjoyed a full, professional production at the Belgrade in Spring 2016, featuring a performance from BAFTA and Golden Globe nominee Cathy Tyson.

This year’s New Black Showcase will see two new plays performed over two days, beginning with Santoshi Mann’s Pick N’ Mix on Wed 13 Nov. Directed by Reena Jaisaiah and Kim Hackleman, Pick N’ Mix follows one family’s search for true identity and devotion as they struggle to pick their battles and mix it up amongst the community during Diwali celebrations.

Like every well-respected figure in the community Hasmukh works hard, prays regularly and listens intently. And his God has spoken. Which is why he’s saying now is the time for his daughter to marry and continue the line. But what if your best friend accuses you of selfishness and of twisting the words of God? And what if that best friend is your daughter?

Then on Thu 14 Nov, Sabiha Mank’s Confetti explores three friends’ experiences of one unforgettable night. Idris is fasting, Remi is giving chase and Alia is fading away, when an unforgivable act sparks a riot of confusion, recrimination and violence in their lives. But is it enough to start a real revolution? The clock ticks. The waiting is over.

Confetti will be directed by Balisha Karra, one of the Belgrade Theatre’s three 2021 Co-Artistic Directors. Together, Balisha Karra, Corey Campbell and Justine Themen will be responsible for putting together an exciting programme of home-produced work for Coventry’s year as UK City of Culture.

Santoshi Mann’s Pick N’ Mix shows at the Belgrade Theatre Coventry on Wednesday 13 November, followed by Sabiha Mank’s Confetti on Thursday 14 November.

Tickets to both shows are available to book now by calling the box office on 024 7655 3055 or visiting www.belgrade.co.uk. Book for both shows together to enjoy 20% off your purchase.

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