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An Inconvenient Black History of British Musical Theatre 1900-1950 – Live at Wigmore Hall


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Shanté Campbell director
Sean Mayes presenter
Sarah K Whitfield presenter
Jonathan Andrew Hume singer
Esme Sears soprano

This concert celebrates the heritage and importance of Black music and performance to Wigmore Hall and the wider British musical theatre industries. At the invitation of John Gilhooly, Sean Mayes and Sarah K. Whitfield will also launch their new book An Inconvenient Black History of British Musical Theatre 1900-1950 (Methuen Drama). Through innovative hybrid concert and discussion form, Mayes and Whitfield will discuss the hidden history the book uncovers, the urgency of uncovering the work of Black creative practitioners, and what it means for the future.

West End performer Jonathan Andrew Hume (Come from Away, The Lion King) and emerging soprano Esme Sears will join Mayes in performances of songs and repertoire that re-centre Black musical experience. The concert is directed by Shanté Campbell


Johnson (1873-1954)
Lift Every Voice and Sing

Cook (1869-1944)
In Dahomey overture selections
(arranged by Sean Mayes)

Mary Jane's Garden - Get Ready For Spring 250x250

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Standin’ in the need o’ prayer
(arranged by John C. Payne)

Jerome Kern (1885-1945)
Stepping Stones
Once in a Blue Moon

Hunter (1895-1984)
Downhearted Blues

Eubie Blake (1887-1983)
Memories of You
(arranged by Sean Mayes)

Weepin’ Mary
(arranged by Lawrence Brown)

Overstreet (1888-1935)
There’ll Be Some Changes Made


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