Sunday, 31 October 2010

What a night..

I was hoping to be able to write a blog on Thursday, about how preparations were going. 

I do not know how I thought I'd be able to do that! It was so so busy all day. Firstly Cheryl and myself met with Jinhee (lighting designer) to help put up the lights in the space. Jinhee was on the ball. Her lighting absolutely transformed the space. Rehearsals for Blue Blood, Harriet Tubman and Dad(die) were squeezed into the day somehow. I will not try to work out how. Before we knew it, the time was 6:30pm and we had so much still to do - like printing the programmes!

We were so lucky to get a fantastic artist called Tom Bull to create an image for our cover: 

The doors opened at 7:05pm. Literally every actor was grabbing every last second to go through lines, songs... etc. If I remember correctly the cast of Blue Blood found themselves a tiny corridor to do their line run. Not particularly glamorous mind.

At 7:30pm we entered the church - couldn't believe my eyes! It was packed!! And with a really diverse audience in age and in colour. Great. Our actors were fantastic. And the performance poets!  -  Pure Feminine Energy and Saran Green. I had never seen performance poetry. And I have come to the conclusion that I have seriously been missing out. Our directors Fiona Clift, Monique Sterling and Cheryl Gallacher are next generation of directors about to whup this industry into shape. They were fantastic to work with and I was really proud of their contribution and energetic, upbeat attitude.

I can truly say that I couldn't have asked for a better evening. The church was transformed into this performance space where you could hear people laughing and tutting at different themes of the work. 

As for the next event... yowsers. Back to the board people.


Sunday, 24 October 2010

Thursday Night is the Night!!

That's right!

Thursday 28 October, 7.30pm at Holy Trinity, Dalston

For a map, click here

To reserve a ticket for only £5, email

We are taking short plays, poetry and performance to Dalston, celebrating the work of Black Women artists writing from the 1920s to the present day.

We are putting on our night not in a theatre, but in a church in the hub of one of London's most diverse communities.

Theatre is for everyone. Stories are for everyone. We're not waiting for anyone else to bring this night to us!

See ya then,


Nearly There Hackney

Rehearsals are going really well for all the shows! 

I love first days. Well, I should say I have a love/hate relationship with any read through. There's such excitement in the room because you're about to hear the voices of the characters for the first time but you can also feel the nervousness! It was great to see Harriet Tubman up on her feet yesterday, and the music is brilliant! I have such a love of gospel and negro spirituals, so hearing that for the first time was just perfect!!!

I'm going to be talking about Our Place on the Stage tonight on BBC London radio 84.9 fm between 9-9:45pm.

Hope you can tune in!


Friday, 22 October 2010

Well. What do we have in store for you?

Our first event: Our place on the Stage

Two of the first ever plays to be published by Black women playwrights:

Harriet Tubman by May Miller    
Blue Blood by Georgia Douglas Johnson                        

A brand new play by the brilliant emerging playwright Charlene James, who participated in the Royal Court Theatre's Young Writer's Programme in 2008.

Poetry / Music / Performance poets 

We also have a stellar cast, including Keisha Amponsa Banson, Marlon G Day, Stephen Fewell, Marsha Henry, Linda MathisLaura Rollins, Catherine Hammond, Marcia Mantack, Osi Okerafor, Amanda Wilkin, Ava Charles, Belida Fenty and Lance Kirby

OUR PLACE ON THE STAGE: A celebration of work by Black Women Writers
28th October

Holy Trinity Church
Beechwood Road
E8 3DY

From our friends at Theatre 503 - this looks great! We'll be booking quickly..

A sparkling satire of British politics by Gabriel Bisset-Smith 

20 October - 13 November 2010
Tuesday - Saturday: 7.45pm
Sundays: 5pm (Pay What You Can)

"Nobody knows who to vote for and nobody really cares. All it would take is for someone, anyone with a bit of honesty and charisma to come along and they could clean up."

It's 2015 and British politics is a hot steaming mess. The Green Party could finally be in with a chance, but first they'll need a fresh face to front the campaign. Enter Darren, a black youth worker with integrity, ideals and a winning smile. But in this world of dirty tricks and dangerous egos, change will always come at a price.

Directed by Paul Robinson
Design by Libby Watson
Lighting by Kevin Treacy
Sound and Music by Simon Slater

Cast: Sarah Berger, Christopher Brandon, Syrus Lowe, Sam Pamphilon, Simon Rivers, Kate Sissons and David Verrey

Tickets: £14/£9 concs
Box office: 020 7978 7040

**EARLYBIRD BOOKING OFFER: First 100 tickets in the first week 19/20/21/23/24 October) JUST £5 when you call 020 7978 7040**

Monday, 18 October 2010

Featured Writer: Isis

A few weeks ago I had the pleasure of meeting Isis, one of our writers. Isis' talents stretch across a wide range of live performance mediums, and her experience is substantial. Isis has just finished working as an Assistant Director on A Raisin in the Sun at the Manchester Royal Exchange and is currently a Practitioner at Contact theatre, making a performance piece with other young people at the Trafford Centre, in association with the Manchester Science Museum. Isis is also on the Critical Mass Young Writer's Programme at the Royal Court.

Isis' monologue takes inspiration from the provocations of two independent female voices from the Harlem Renaissance, exploring language, race and the absurd dichotomy between celebrity and the developing world as portrayed in so much of our media. Isis' monolgue challenges us to rethink our acceptance of a bizarre culture in which children are viewed as commodities.

Isis' monologue will be performed by an actor as Isis is interested in pushing her work in this direction. Hopefully the result will be as engaging as it was when I first read it on the page.


Sunday, 17 October 2010

**Casting Announced**

Blue Blood
by Georgia Douglas Johnson 


Catherine Hammond
Marcia Mantack
Osi Okerafor
Amanda Wilkin

We are so happy to be working with such talented actors! I'll keep you updated with the casting for the other plays as soon as I can.


Saturday, 16 October 2010

Having the courage to do it yourself

I have had one of the busiest weeks of my life. I have been casting the two period plays with Cheryl and a fantastic young casting director called Sophie Davies.

Now Cheryl and myself both have the same day job which you would think would be helpful, in terms of swapping ideas on our breaks and nudging each other to get things done. HOWEVER, I can safely say that we must have been brilliant friends before we decided to work together as producers on the show because it is stressful when you attempt something for the first time. But we're still mates and I am so glad that we're attempting this! 

London is a great city - full of culture and a real mixture of different people. I love working and living here. I trained at the Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama, and since finishing I have learnt so much about the industry and the awful figures on how many actors are out of work. It is a tough industry. But no one said it would be easy, eh?

You have to make your own work, take risks, make contacts. And lastly but most importantly, ENJOY


Sunday, 10 October 2010


OPS present
Our Place on the Stage
Dalston Trinity Centre, 28th Oct 2010

To celebrate Black History Month 2010, young people explore fresh visions of Dalston for a one night only performance at the Dalston Trinity Centre, in the heart of Hackney.

Our Place on the Stage launches its first cross-arts performance devised entirely by young creatives under the age of twenty-five. The night will be a heady cocktail of short plays, performance, music and poetry.  

The varied line-up features two early 1920’s short plays by seminal Black Women artists: Blue Blood by Georgina Douglas Johnson and Harriet Tubman by May Miller. Taking inspiration from the provocations of these two independent voices, Our Place on the Stage will also feature new work from acclaimed spoken word artists which include Isis (Contact Theatre and Apples and Snakes) and Pure Feminine Energy (performer at Kat Francois’ Word 4 Word). Live Drumming from the Hackney Drummer Duo will complement the evening.

Our Place on the Stage is a cross-arts collective of emerging young professional theatre practitioners, spoken word artists, poets, musicians and filmmakers. Championing the contribution of Black Women artists to the stage, young participants have had key opportunities to work alongside talented professional spoken word artists; a key opportunity for emerging local talent.
Our Place on the Stage is funded by The Trusthouse Charitable Foundation.

Black History Month is an annual celebration of the contribution that Black African and Caribbean communities have made both on a local level and across the globe. Our Place on the Stage is one of wide range of events celebrating achievements by these communities in creative art and media by showcasing some of the community's modern day talents, as well as taking a look at contributions made in the past. 

Trusthouse Charitable Foundation 
                                                                 Events Listing
Performance Type: Theatre, Spoken word performance
Date: 28th October 2010, 7pm for 7.30pm start
Location: Holy Trinity, Dalston, Beechwood Road, E8 3DY.
Tickets: £5 each. Available for reservation:

Wednesday, 6 October 2010


Here's the Poster! Thanks goes to Stuart for designing it!


We are offering tickets at only £5 each! Bargain.

It's pay on the door. So, to reserve your ticket(s) please email us at with you name, number and how many you need. If there's a large number of you let us know and we'll advise you of our fantastic group rates.

Get booking, I don't want you to miss out!



Tuesday, 5 October 2010

The Paperwork

I went to Hackney services Centre today. Huge waiting room. Took my ticket and sat down. I was there to hand in my temporary events notice. Administration is not really how I envisaged this project. Pretty funny how unprepared you really find yourself! I never thought this would be easy - but seriously this is BIG!

But we like challenges.

Admin. Hopefully the last.


Saturday, 2 October 2010

24 days to go

It is the 2nd October. the 2nd.

Where did all the time go? Is it really October? 

Planning is going well. We're meeting on Sunday with a couple of directors to show them the space, and unleashing the promotion of the event over the next couple of days!

And... we are actively seeking for actors who want to be involved. Anyone interested should email us their cv at