MELANIN BOX FESTIVAL 2018
INCLUDING POETRY, THEATRE, LIVE MUSIC & MORE!
An eclectic mix of British Black Artistry from contemporary dance to live music spread across both days of the festival.
#MelaninMagic at its finest...
ZEZE MILLZ & DAVID AJAO
Trained by some of L.A’s most renowned acting coaches at the New York Film Academy, Zeze is an actress and presenter best known for her fearless and unadulterated take on things #HeadscarfDiaries #TheZezeMillzShow. And utilising her platform as a figurehead in the campaign against DSTRKT nightclub's colourism.
She had a lead role in the SuperBowl Sublymonal Sprite Commercials, and also filmed for the hit online series Brothers With No Game.
David Ajao is an actor, trained at Rose Bruford College. He is known for Holby City (1999), Cockneys vs Zombies (2012) and 50 Kisses (2014) and recently Barbershop Chronicles at The National Theatre (2018). He is full of banter an avid Arsenal fan ...which he will likely remind you of as often as he can!
Catch them both on Aug 4th & 5th
NEW WRITING piece from LAURENCE OLIVIER AWARD WINNING Playwright commissioned by Melanin Box Festival. Turn up on the day to catch the world premiere.
Royal Court Young Writer's Alumnus '07, her Award Winning first play GONE TOO FAR! has been performed at the Royal Court, Hackney Empire and The Albany Theatre. Its screenplay adaptation (produced by Poisson Rouge Pictures and the BFI) premiered at the 2013 London Film Festival, with its sequel GONE TOO FAR currently in development.
Agbaje was also nominated for the Evening Standard Most Promising Playwright of 2008.
A former gang leader who's turned his life around, Karl is an activist, influencer and gifted orator. Using his life experiences to shape his performances and unite the community.
With his tireless campaign and consultancy work focusing on gang rehabilitation, he is one of the most potent young voices in the country, even making the exclusive invite list at the Royal Wedding of Prince Harry and Meghan,
Having opened for PLAN B to a crowd of 5000, he is more than your typical UK Hip Hop artist - blending poetry and musicality with his unique flair - you can bet his performance will be something you don't want to miss!
AVANT GARDE DANCE
Avant Garde Dance Company is at the forefront of London’s innovative Hip hop/ Contemporary Dance scene. The company was founded in 2001 and is led by Artistic Director Tony Adigun. Having gained extensive experience in the world of commercial dance, Tony set out to transform a group of hip hop dancers into a unique company that could also explore contemporary influences and create a more unusual, abstract and artistic practice.
An international performance artist known for punchy work on race and queer culture. Incorporating spoken word, dance, film theatre and lip syncing, this drag act will knock you thigh high stockings off!!
Lasana has worked with Mykki Blanco, Big Freedia, The Tate Britain and Manchester Art Gallery.
Expect the unexpected.
AUG 5th Tristan Fynn-Aiduenu
The future. Dystopia. Spirits have let loose and men are being torn apart - literally. To save humanity, Dr Sims, Lieutenant Siobhan and prisoner Horus must find and capture Ebony - the instigator and witch of the madness. However wounds are about to be ripped open, songs and screams will be heard and truth will be revealed. Ebony , written and directed by Initiative.dkf associate Tristan Fynn-Aiduenu, is a supernatural R&B Jukebox horror about what could happen when you gaslight black women for too long.
Part of a new wave of British R&B, South Londoner Kadeem Tyrell was born into music - with a DJ father immersing him in everything from Lovers Rock to rare groove, and a church singing mother introducing him to raw vocal talent - gospel, East Coast hip-hop and nineties soul all shape his smooth sound.
Following a string collabs over the last couple of years with East London producer Nat Brown and garage producer RYN, his new EP, Feels, showcases a rising star.
ISABELLE + MICAH
A blend of contemporary. Ballet & Story
Isabelle is a dancer & performer who trained at The Brits. Influenced & inspired heavily by Alvin Ailey Dance company. Credits include Lion King (Westend), Oliver Twist (West End), Wizkid, AfroRepublik (o2 Arena), and One Music Africa Festival (Wembley SSE Arena).
Micah is a dance artist, facilitator, performer and creator. Training includes The Brits, Zoonation and Bridgang. His work explores innovative ways to push arts to the next level. Credits include: ITV (goohoo media), Move it , Mr Eazi - AfroRepublik (o2 Arena), Royal Albert Hall (Dance Prom) and XXL Championship: special Guest.
Once long-listed as one of MTV’s Brand New Artist’s, Writer/ Poet Yomi Sode, balances the fine line between both Nigerian and British cultures, which can be, at times, humorous, loving, self-reflective and uncomfortable.
Born in Oyo State Nigeria, Yomi Sode grew up around music and has been performing for the past 10 years. His accomplishments include founding BoxedIN in 2012, a quick fire, free Poetry night at Boxpark in Shoreditch; tickets to his one man show COAT at the renowned Roundhouse Ldn selling out within 24hrs; and being published in Rialto Magazine, Bare lit and 10: Poets of the New Generation.
ACTING UP COMEDY
AUG 5th Ashley J & Tee-J
With credits across TV (BBC, CH5, ITV, Sky Atlantic, MTV), Radio (Radio 1, Fubar Radio, RinseFM), Film (KP Productions, Leopard Films) AND Theatre (Lyric Hammersmith, The National, Birmingham REP, Manchester Royal Exchange, The Barbican) double-act partners Ashley J & Tee-J present ACTing Up! the hit improvised comedy game.
INTRODUCING BABIRYE: U ALREADY KNOW HER
AUG 5th Babirye Bukilwa
babirye bukilwa, formerly known as Vanessa Babirye is a multifaceted artist and part of "ya fave queer womxnist sisterfriends" group Sistren. Acting professionally since the age of sixteen, babirye has extensive experience in stage, screen and radio already with her credits including the BBC, the ICA, Film London, Channel 4, the Royal Court Theatre, Hampstead Theatre, Nottingham Playhouse and the National Theatre. Her second play is currently supported by Talawa Theatre Company and she has just finished filming for Channel 4.
FRAGMENTS OF A COMPLICATED MIND
AUG 5th Silhouttez In The Dark
Unapologetic and unafraid, FOACM* is an explosive blend of physical theatre, poetry and direct address. An extract from their raw social commentary, on sex, social media, femininity and blackness.Written by Award winning artist Damilola DK Fashola
Vicky started singing in the church and in her school choir then began to pursue her music career vigorously after an appearance on X Factor. Vicky is also a professional dancer with a bachelor's degree. Credits Include: Sadler’s Wells, Royal Festival Hall, Brixton Academy and O2 indigo under her belt. Her recent single is ‘Cooked Food’ is out now.
CHRONICLES OF THE BOUDOIR
AUG 5th Emergo Inc
Well that can mean a whole lot of things, take it as you wish. How did it go down for you the last time you hit the bedroom? Is it a sensual Experience? Or is it just simply a routine between two people or maybe three….?
This theatre piece from Emergo Inc, the company that brought you the sold out Street Girl (Albany Theatre, 2016), gives a fresh look at our bedroom exploits and how we perceive them.
Kemi is a Violinist & Singer with her own unique flavour. Mixing the classical and contemporary, you don't want miss her unconventional violin covers to the sounds of Bashment, Grime, R&B & more!