How Liverpool will mark Black History Month 2023
3 months ago
Arts and community organisations across Liverpool will be coming together throughout October to mark this year’s Black History Month with a programme themed around ‘the power of words through storytelling and shared histories’.
The programme of events, for this year’s Black History Month, will be a city-wide approach to creatively examine and make visible the contributions by Black Britons across the city-region and beyond.
The programme of events is driven by Writing on the Wall (WoW), Creative Organisations of Liverpool (COoL) and supported by Culture Liverpool, Liverpool City Halls and libraries.
The programme, featuring over 30 events, runs throughout October and November at various venues across the city and include:
- In-conversation with Arun Kundnani on his new book ‘What is Antiracism and why it means Anticapitalism’ – 10 October.
- Organ recital by distinguished British conductor, organist, and pianist Wayne Marshall OBE – 13 October.
- A rehearsed reading and feedback session by Leonisha Barley of her debut play ‘Deported in a Windrush’ – 19 October
- Celebrated playwright and performer Tayo Aluko delves into the challenges faced by the first Black judge during his production ‘Just An Ordinary Lawyer’ – 20 October.
- Black History Month Day Festival – 21 October. Local music artists take to the stage to perform Neo-Jazz, alternative introspective R&B, poetry, art and rap.
- Remembering Pastor Daniels Ekarte – 26 October. Historian Marika Sherwood has pieced together an inspiring account of his remarkable life and work.
- Dorothy Kuya Walking Tour – 28 October. An opportunity to discover more about the lifelong Black British activist Dorothy Kuya.
- BlackFest – Multiple events including workshops, performances and film screenings.
- Black, Female and Scouse. Running until February 2024, this exhibition will celebrate pioneering women of Liverpool, past and present.
- BHM Commissions. Developing new opportunities for Black creatives, Culture Liverpool will be supporting freelance artists and small organisations through funding made possible by the UK Shared Prosperity fund and will include performance, exhibitions, sculptures, literature, music, cuisine and so much more. Various locations, until November.
Councillor Nathalie Nicholas, Liverpool City Council, said:
“Every year in October we celebrate Black History Month, which gives the opportunity to promote and celebrate the contributions of people from the Black diaspora to British society – aiming to foster a better understanding, respect and appreciation of the rich Black history in Liverpool and the wider UK.
“This year the theme – ‘the power of words through storytelling and shared histories’ is significant in changing any negative perceptions and culture through education, arts and music – at the same time celebrating the many Black people who have shaped the community and city”.
Madeline Heneghan, Co-Director, Writing on the Wall, on behalf of COoL said:
“As a city that is still reckoning with its role in the Transatlantic slave trade and as the ‘second city of Empire’, it is fitting that Liverpool BHM23 unpicks these histories and celebrates Black achievement locally and globally.
“In recent years there has been a heightened awareness about the extent that official versions of British History have been whitewashed and sanitised. Discussions abound in the mainstream media about the decolonization of school and university curricula, and the recognition of deep injustices, with some making financial reparations for their family’s involvement in the slave Trade. Black History Month plays an important role in setting the historic record straight”.
Commissioned Artist Quote said: Phina Oruche, Writer and Performer, said:
“I’m proud to be a part of the Black History Month programme through the commissioning fund from Culture Liverpool. My autobiographical theatre piece Identity Crisis was created to reflect the range of emotions and questions I posed about my life and its value.
“This show has given me the freedom to play characters I would never get cast as. All my characters are vulnerable, flawed, and struggling with who they are. Identity Crisis has proved cathartic to me and has restored my joy and faith in humanity and I look forward to sharing my story with everyone.”