thu 14/11/2019

black culture

The Last Black Man in San Francisco review - gentle gentrification blues

San Francisco has rarely looked more unattainably golden than in Joe Talbot’s Sundance prize-winning gentrification parable. Jimmie (Jimmie Fails) once belonged inside the city’s Californian Dream, symbolised for him by the grand Victorian-style...

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Shuck 'n' Jive, Soho Theatre review - a mixed bag, lots of promise

Shuck 'n' Jive is an hour-long two-hander about writing a play about being black in a white industry. The industry? Theatre. Performance. The stage.Simone (played by Olivia Onyehara), an opera singer, is from Lincolnshire. Cassi (played by Tanisha...

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The Last Tree review - young, angry, and black in '90s UK

Putting a radical spin on a fish-out-of-water story, The Last Tree explores troubling aspects of the African diaspora experience in an England riddled with xenophobia and black-on-black racism. Shola Amoo’s semi-autobiographical second feature is...

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Romesh Ranganathan, Brighton Dome review - transgressive, edgy and very likeable

One question springs immediately to mind on hearing that Romesh Ranganathan’s new stand-up show, The Cynic’s Mixtape, is touring: how does he find the time? Ranganathan has overtaken Jack Whitehall as Britain’s most media ubiquitous comic, with a...

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Alvin Ailey, Programme C review - black, beautiful, brilliant

The Ailey company is that rare thing – a dance legend that’s even better than you remember. While no one forgets their first encounter with America’s No.1 touring troupe and its unique mix of ballet, modern, jazz, street, and all-round athletic...

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Chiaroscuro, Bush Theatre review - music, sweet, sweet music

Identity politics has been around for decades. One of the great things about the Bush Theatre in West London is the fact that it not only stages new plays by a diverse range of playwrights, but also successful recent revivals of modern classics such...

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Alvin Ailey American Dance Theatre, Sadler's Wells review - Still more Revelations

There is no equivalent of the Ailey phenomenon. This is a modern dance company with a New York square named after it. It’s a dance company that has performed at the inauguration of two presidents. Its calling card, Revelations, a suite of dances...

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CD: Kano - Hoodies All Summer

Of all grime's original generation, Kano has a strong claim to being the greatest rhyme-constructor in the old school hip hop sense of dense rhymes packed with multiple meanings. Add movie star looks and a penchant for fur coats in photoshoots and...

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Barber Shop Chronicles, Roundhouse review - riotous theatre at its best

Emmanuel (Anthony Ofoegbu) runs Three Kings Barbers in London. His assistant, Samuel (Mohammed Mansaray), is the son of his erstwhile business partner, who is currently in jail. Emmanuel is boss, surrogate father and — occasionally — verbal punching...

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Blues in the Night, Kiln Theatre review - hard times, hot tunes

It’s too darn hot, BoJo is in Downing Street, and we’re all going to Brexit hell – so we might as well sing the blues. Or at least take a night off from the apocalypse to enjoy a virtuoso company singing them for us in this rousing revival of...

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Whitewash, Soho Theatre review - a wild-at-heart linguistic joy-ride

This witty street-smart play about a white-skinned boy born to a mixed-race mother deploys its narrative with the dexterity of a dance. Two performers move backwards and forwards across the stage, switching through different characters, skin colours...

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What's My Name: Muhammad Ali, Sky Atlantic review - why they called him The Greatest

As Anthony Joshua’s shock defeat by the unfancied Andy Ruiz Jr suggests, heavyweight boxers ain’t what they used to be. Antoine Fuqua’s sprawling HBO documentary (this was the first of two parts) bangs the point home with its vivid examination of...

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