WHAT'S ON

West Indies to West Midlands – New Photography Exhibition from Inès Elsa Dalal

As Black History Month 2014 comes to a close, we’d like to thank everyone who attended our special events and joined us in remembering the brave soldiers who gave their lives for Britain in the First and Second World Wars. Black Blood Runs Red was a huge success in celebrating the contributions of soldiers of the Commonwealth often forgotten, we’re very proud to have been a part of it, and plan to programme many more such events in the coming years.

Gone, but not forgotten, as the saying goes, and a new exhibition launching this month at The Drum will continue to shed light on the contributions of servicemen from the former Commonwealth. West Indies to West Midlands is the most recent work of documentary photographer Inès Elsa Dalal, who specialises in conducting social commentary projects involving heritage, community, sanctuary and social rituals.

Presented in association with the Why Are West Indians project (WAWI), this exhibition is the beginning of a new archive of previously untold narratives linking over 400 years of contribution to the British military with mass migration from the West Indies to Britain. Inès initiated this archive twelve months ago, and will continue to work with underrepresented communities in relation to unreported war contribution during the commemoration of the First World War (2014-2018).

The exhibition launches on Tue 11 Nov at 6pm, and will be free to attend and open to the public until Thu 8 Jan 2015.   For more information, call The Drum’s Box Office on 0121 333 2444, or visit www.the-drum.org.uk. To learn more about the Why Are West Indians project, visit www.whyarewestindians.co.uk

Follow WAWI on twitter @WAWIproject with #WestIndiesToWestMidlands, and follow Ines @InesElsaDalal

for-Wards Community Music Project, Sun 26 Oct @ The Drum

At The Drum we are always looking for new ways to get our audiences involved in the arts and express themselves. We are therefore proud to present for-Wards, a hyper-local music project funded as part of Sound and Music’s touring programme, giving communities the opportunity to contribute to the creation of new music.

The project is produced and led by composer Bobbie-Jane Gardner who, with a team of composers and professional musicians, will lead a series of workshops focussed on discovering sounds that represent local neighbourhoods. These sounds and other input from the workshops will be used to write original music, which will then be performed in the communities where they were inspired.

Composers will collaborate with those who take part in the workshops to create ‘sonic maps’ of their neighbourhoods that will form the basis of these new compositions, to be performed in each community in March next year.

 During each workshop participants will:

– Use maps to locate places and sounds of interest in their neighbourhood

– Go on a walking tour to record the places and sounds of interest using audio recorders and mobile phones

– Work with a professional sound artist, composer and film maker

This pilot project will work with residents living in Balsall Heath, Newtown and Small Heath. Each workshop will last for two hours – starting at 12 noon and finishing at 2pm, and are free. Places are limited to 15 participants for each workshop.

Workshop dates:

Newtown residents: Sun 26 Oct, 12 -2pm, The Drum Arts Centre

Small Heath residents: Sat 1 Nov, 12-2pm, Small Heath Library

Balsall Heath residents: Sat 8 Nov, 12-2pm, mac arts centre

 

For more information, contact Andrene Miller on 0753 238 4474 or info@for-wards.co.uk, or visit www.soundandmusic.org

It’s Time for Afrovibes! Tue 21 – Sat 25 Oct @ The Drum

After months of preparation and practice, Afrovibes 2014 has finally arrive in Birmingham! It opened last night at mac Birmingham to and will be on from Mon 20 to Sat 25 Oct.

The Drum will come alive with a sensational selection of South African Theatre, Dance, Music,Spoken Word and Visual Arts from internationally acclaimed actors, directors, performers and musicians. We hope you’ll join us in making this year’s festival even greater than the last, including our fantastic Afrovibes Closing Party on Sat 25 Oct at 10pm following Rhetorical.

Afrovibes Closing Party
Sat 25 Oct, 10pm

The Drum, Frontiers Café Bar
£3 OTD – Free admission with ticket stubs from any Afrovibes events

Join us at the Afrovibes Closing Party as we bid farewell to our South African guests and celebrate the end of the Festival. The Drum’s Frontiers Township Café will become the ultimate African music hot spot as DJ Fenta Zulu and MC Appollon from the legendary Club Afrique are joined by Newstyle Radio’s DJ Wali and DJ Fresh. Expect an amazing night of dance and music as we rock the Township Café with great classics and the latest hits from Soukous, Makosa, Afrobeat, Reggae, Hip-Hop and many more.

Also taking the stage for live performances will be a cappella trio The Soil presenting their stunning mix of township Jazz, Hip-Hop, Afro-Pop and Afro-Soul plus special musical vibes from the cast of Mamela, all hosted by Lit Fuse poets Amerah Saleh, Sipho Eric Dube and Nafeesa Hamid. Tickets for the Closing Party are £3, but take any ticket stub from The Drum’s Afrovibes shows, or any show at mac or Birmingham REP, and you’ll to get free admission! Even better, the same ticket will also get you £1 off any Afrovibes shows at mac or Birmingham REP – and vice versa!

Here’s what you can look forward to across the week, so make sure you keep these dates in your diary!

Freedom or Death: Photographic Exhibition – Dr Vanley Burke
On until Fri 7 Nov

An unprecedented photographic exhibition charting the final days of South Africa’s apartheid era, captured by documentary photographer Dr Vanley Burke.

Mandela 27
Until Sat 25 Oct
The Drum Café

Step into a recreation of Nelson Mandela’s Robben Island prison cell and learn the history of his and South Africa’s fight for freedom.

Punk in Africa
Tue 21 Oct, 7pm

Three chords, three countries, one revolution… the story of South Africa’s multiracial punk movement.

An Evening with Jean ‘Binta’ Breeze MBE and Tracie Morris
Wed 22 Oct, 7:30pm

An evening of conversation and performance from Jamaican poet and dub artist Jean ‘Binta’ Breeze MBE and the acclaimed US poet and voice artist Tracie Morris.

Biko’s Quest
Thu 23 Oct, 7:30pm

The legacy of inspirational anti-apartheid campaigner Steve Biko, brought to life through amazing contemporary dance.

Mamela
Fri 24 Oct, 7:30pm

Hear the voices, hopes and dreams of the remarkable young women of South Africa’s ‘born-free’ generation in a fusion of European and African theatre. Book your tickets, and get a special concessionary price on tickets for Township Comets.

Township Comets
Fri 24 Oct, 9pm

Enjoy a joyful mix of South African Township Jazz inspired by South African saxophonist Dudu Pukwana. Concession prices apply for anyone who has been to see Mamela

Rhetorical
Sat 25 Oct, 7:30pm

Thabo Mbeki succeeded Nelson Mandela as President of South Africa in 1999, and the highs, and lows, of his political struggles are explored through the eyes of those he influenced.

Township Café
Every day during the festival

Relax in our specially created Township Café and enjoy unique art, drama, music and spoken word events happening throughout the day during the festival.

Afrovibes at mac birmingham

The Soil
Mon 20 Oct, 8pm

Soweto’s award-winning, platinum-selling beatbox a cappella group combine an eclectic mix of township jazz, Hip-Hop and Afro-pop.

Skierlik
Tue 21 Oct, 8pm

In January 2008, in Skierlik, west of Pretoria, seventeen year-old Johan Nel went on a racially motivated shooting spree killing four people and wounding eight. Skierlik explores tragic effects on those left behind.

Rainbow Scars
Wed 22 & Thu 23 Oct, 8pm

Written by Mike Van Graan, Rainbow Scars follows Lindiwe, a black teenager adopted by white parents, confronting her racial identity in the new Rainbow Nation.

Double Bill: Mana and Dark Cell
Fri 24 Oct, 8pm
Double Bill: Uncles & Angels and Dark Cell
Sat 25 Oct, 8pm

In Mana, South African choreographer Vincent Mantsoe evokes the spirit of African dance and Shaman traditions. The award-winning Dark Cell draws inspiration from prisoners of Robben Island, using a prison cell as metaphor for mental imprisonment. Uncles & Angels uses breath-taking interactive dance and video to explore South Africa’s traditional Reed Dance.

Afrovibes at Birmingham REP

Unagumbe
Fri 24 Oct, 7pm
Tickets: £5 (£3)

Making its UK premiere, this compelling short film reworks Noyes’ Fludde by Benjamin Britten, relocating the story of Noah’s Ark to present-day South Africa, and re-imagining Noah as a woman who must hold her family together.

Visit Afrovibes UK to view the full nationwide season of events. Find out more on facebook at Afrovibes as well as Twitter @AfrovibesUK with #afrovibes too.

Sanchez concert Cancelled at Bingley Hall

The Drum official statement:

We regret to inform you that the Sanchez concert scheduled for tonight at The New Bingley Hall has been cancelled due to circumstances beyond our control. We sincerely apologize for this cancellation and the inconvenience it may have caused you.

All ticket holders will be entitled to a full refund of the ticket price paid, with proof of purchase, from the outlet that the ticket was purchased. Refunds for card payments will be available from The Drum straight away. However cash refunds will not be available until after 3pm on Tuesday 21st of October 2014.

Ticket purchased at one of the ticket outlets must be returned to the outlet for refund.  Please contact the ticket outlet of purchase and they will direct you how to claim your refund. Refund of booking fees will be at the discretion of the individual ticket outlets.

Arts On Your Doorstep – Flat Out

Here at The Drum we’re always looking for ways to make the arts more interesting, more accessible, and more involving for the local community. Whether neighbourhood festivals or creative workshops, we want you to get involved and have a fantastic time with the arts.

That’s why we’ve taken the ultimate step, and given local residents the chance to create and choreograph their own unique performance, working with Birmingham Royal Ballet and the University of Birmingham, as part of Family Arts Festival 2014. We are proud to present Flat Out, a unique fusion of Dance, Music and Film created by the local community, for the local community.

For the last several weeks, dance experts from Birmingham Royal Ballet have been working with the residents and families of Inkerman House, the high-rise flats just opposite The Drum, to create a performance inspired by the experiences, stories, aspirations and perspectives of the families who live there. The highs and lows, love and hate, tears and laughter of a typical family life have been interpreted into dance, creating a truly unique art form with universal elements any family will recognise.

To house this innovative performance, a specially commissioned recreation of a typical family flat will be built in The Drum by Willmott Dixon.

The project aims to give local families a more direct hand in creating arts events which speak directly to their experiences and interests – not just creating Community Arts, but understanding the Art of Community, bringing neighbours together to appreciating and celebrate what unites us, yet makes us unique. Whether Dance and Music or Crafts and Cooking, everyone has a way of expressing themselves and Flat Out celebrates this in an open, entertaining environment.

The production will be performed at 12pm3pm and 7pm throughout the day on Sat 25 Oct, with space at each performance for up to 70 audience members. Everyone is welcome, and admission is free.

Gazebo Theatre presents The Hallowed Turf, Thu 16 Oct @ The Drum

The First World War will forever be remembered as a time of great suffering and loss, a tragic mistake from which mankind has learnt too few lessons. Although the death and disaster of those dark days must be remembered, too often forgotten are the bonds of friendship and camaraderie forged on the battlefields, and how such adversity can overcome the greatest divisions.

The Hallowed Turf is one such story, a tale of soldiers, heroes, and football, created by ground-breaking production company Gazebo Theatre and based on the true life story of footballing star Walter Tull, one of the first Afro-Caribbean players in the top division of professional English football. Serving in the Footballer’s Battalion of the Middlesex Regiment during the First World War, Tull saw extensive combat, including the Battle of the Somme in 1916. Although social conventions of the time prevented any non-white soldiers from achieving rank, Tull’s bravery, selfless defence of his fellow soldiers, and “gallantry and coolness” in battle gained him the respect of his superior officers, and be became the very first British soldier of Afro-Caribbean heritage to be awarded the rank of Second Lieutenant.

Through his actions as both a professional sportsman and a soldier, Tull showed the ignorance of societal rules which tried to deny people equality based on race, his skill and bravery bridging all barriers of discrimination. The Hallowed Turf takes place during these dark days on the front line, as Tull befriends a young recruit who dreams of returning home and becoming a professional footballer.

This incredible story is a cornerstone performance of both this year’s Black History Month celebrations and First World War commemorations. Funny, moving and honest, it is ideal for all audiences, and a fantastic educational experience.

We hope you’ll join us for this very special event. Click here to book your tickets, or call The Drum’s Box Office on 0121 333 2444.

Listen below to hear an interview with Oraine Johnson, who plays Walter Tull, on BBC WM’s ChatBack show

For more information on Gazebo Theatre, visit their website, and click here to learn more about this year’s Black History Month celebrations.

 

Return to the spotlight for Aysha Loren, supporting Sanchez at The New Bingley Hall, Fri 17 Oct

It’s never easy when a fantastic artist chooses to step away from the microphone, especially when they have such talent as Aysha Loren. The sensational singer-songwriter from West London has been a presence in the music industry since the early 90s, lending her vocals to numerous big time artists, and got one of her first breaks supporting the massive Destiny’s Child during their first UK tour.

Despite huge success and a rising reputation, Aysha chose to take a break from the demands of the music industry to start a family, but could never quite walk away, continuing to write and building up an impressive catalogue of material just waiting to be shared with the world. After being asked to perform at a Whitney Houston tribute concert, her spark was rekindled, and she set about making a name for herself again…

Now it’s finally time for Aysha to be back in the spotlight where she belongs. As a tantalising taster of things to come, her single Keep It Like This leaked earlier this year, instantly launching her back onto the music scene as one of the most requested radio singles for nearly a month running, and was soon followed by her first new EP Back To You in July. She’s been busy every since racking up an impressive array of achievements, reaching the finals of the National UK Open Mic Competition and sharing the stage alongside the likes of John Holt, Frankie Paul, Janet Kay and Luciano.

Now she takes the stage to support heartthrob Sanchez and special headliner Etana The Strong One on Fri 17 Oct at The New Bingley Hall for one amazing night of Reggae you won’t want to miss.

As a Big Drum Birthday Thank You to our great customers, we’re amending prices to £30 in advance and £35 on the door – and, a Super Special 100 tickets will be on sale for only £25 per ticket! (This offer is only applicable to tickets sold from The Drum’s Box Office or online at http://www.the-drum.org.uk/single-event/?id=SRS.) Please note these will be sold on a first come, first served basis. Hurry, they won’t last long!

This event will be taking place at: The New Bingley Hall 1 Hockley Circus Hockley Birmingham B18 5PP

Tickets are also available from any of the outlets below.

Ticketing Outlets
Please note booking fees apply on all tickets except ticket purchased from The Drum

Online
Ticket Sellers –http://www.theticketsellers.co.uk
Ticket Web – http://www.ticketweb.co.uk

Outlets

Birmingham
Bingley Hall: 0121 666 7610
Summit Records: 0121 455 8844
Hatman: 0121 643 2047

Wolverhampton
Markies Barbers: 0796 027 8059

Leicester
Rockaboom: 0116 2538 293

Nottingham
Ultimate Barbers: 0115 970 3033

For a taste of Aysha’s amazing music, click here

Super Special Sanchez Ticket Offer – 100 Tickets only £25!

On Fri 17 Oct, international heartthrob Sanchez, stunning special headliner Etana, and singer-songwriter Aysha Loren light up Birmingham’s New Bingley Hall for a smash hit ensemble of Reggae and Lovers Rock. We want everyone to join us for this brilliant night, after listening to our valued customers, we’re sending them a Big Drum Birthday Thank You, so tickets are now priced £30 in advance and £35 on the door, with 100 being sold at £25 each!

To grab one of the Super Special 100 tickets priced £25 each,  call The Drum’s Box Office on 0121 333 2444 or online at http://www.the-drum.org.uk/single-event/?id=SRS. These will be sold on a first come, first served basis and only via The Drum, so you better hurry, they won’t last long.

Any customer who has already bought their tickets for £35 can call The Drum’s Box Office on 0121 333 2444, and get a £5 refund.

Afrovibes 2014 is Nearly Here! Mon 20 – Sat 26 Oct @ The Drum & mac Birmingham

There’s not long to go now until this year’s incredible South African arts festival Afrovibes comes to the UK and here at The Drum we can’t wait! We’ve been working closely with our good friends at mac Birmingham to bring you some of the very best events and we hope you’ll join us in making this year’s festival even greater than the last.

To give you a sneak peak of what’s in store, click the video below, and prepare to be amazed…

Here’s what you can look forward to across the week, so make sure you keep these dates in your diary!

Freedom or Death: Photographic Exhibition – Dr Vanley Burke
On until Fri 7 Nov

An unprecedented photographic exhibition charting the final days of the apartheid era in South Africa as experienced by its’ people, captured by preeminent documentary photographer Dr Vanley Burke.

Mandela 27
Mon 13 – Sat 25 Oct
The Drum Café

Step into a recreation of Nelson Mandela’s Robben Island prison cell and learn the history of his and South Africa’s fight for freedom.

Punk in Africa
Tue 21 Oct, 7pm

Three chords, three countries, one revolution… Punk in Africa is the story of the multiracial punk movement within South Africa, and the inspirational rebellious spirit of the genre.

An Evening with Jean ‘Binta’ Breeze MBE and Tracie Morris
Wed 22 Oct, 7:30pm

An evening of conversation and performance from two leading international figures, the acclaimed Jamaican poet and dub artist Jean ‘Binta’ Breeze MBE and the acclaimed US poet and voice artist Tracie Morris.

Biko’s Quest
Thu 23 Oct, 7:30pm

The legacy of the inspirational anti-apartheid campaigner inspire this powerful production, taking the audience on a poignant and emotional journey through danced storytelling. “It is better to die for an idea that will live, than to live for an idea that will die” – Steve Biko

Mamela
Fri 24 Oct, 7:30pm

Mamela (‘to Listen’) follows a group of remarkable young women from the Eastern Cape of South Africa, capturing the opinions, experiences and aspirations of the ’born-free‘ generation in a fusion of European and African theatre. Book your tickets, and get a special concessionary price on tickets for Township Comets.

Township Comets
Fri 24 Oct, 9pm

Enjoy a joyful mix of South African Township Jazz inspired by South African saxophonist Dudu Pukwana. With infections rhythms and an anarchic style, you won’t be able to sit still! Concession prices apply for anyone who has been to see Mamela

Rhetorical
Sat 25 Oct, 7:30pm

Thabo Mbeki succeeded Nelson Mandela as President of South Africa in 1999, and the highs, and lows, of his political struggles are explored in Rhetorical through the eyes of those he influenced most.

Township Café
Every day during the festival 

Relax in our specially created Township Café and enjoy unique art, drama, music and spoken word events happening throughout the day during the festival.

Afrovibes at mac birmingham

The Soil
Mon 20 Oct, 8pm

Soweto’s award-winning, platinum-selling beatbox a cappella group combine an eclectic mix of township jazz, Hip-Hop and Afro-pop. The Sid Peacock Youth Ensemble (mac Associate Artist funded by Arts Council England) will also perform as part of the opening night event.

Skierlik
Tue 21 Oct, 8pm

In January 2008, in Skierlik, west of Pretoria, seventeen year-old Johan Nel went on a racially motivated shooting spree killing four people and wounding eight. The massacre had tragic effects on those left behind. Skierlik, a solo show written and performed by award-winning playwright Phillip M Dikotla, is the story of one man returning to the scene of the carnage.

Rainbow Scars
Wed 22 & Thu 23 Oct, 8pm
Written by Mike Van Graan, Rainbow Scars follows Lindiwe, a black teenager adopted by white parents, confronting her racial identity in the new Rainbow Nation, the term coined by Archbishop Desmond Tutu to describe post-apartheid South Africa.

Double Bill: Mana and Dark Cell
Fri 24 Oct, 8pm
Double Bill: Uncles & Angels and Dark Cell
Sat 25 Oct, 8pm

In Mana, South African choreographer Vincent Mantsoe evokes the spirit of African dance and Shaman traditions. The award-winning Dark Cell draws inspiration from prisoners of Robben Island, using a prison cell as metaphor for mental imprisonment. Uncles & Angels uses breath-taking interactive dance and video to explore South Africa’s traditional Reed Dance.

Visit Afrovibes UK to view the full nationwide season of events. Find out more on facebook at Afrovibes as well as Twitter @AfrovibesUK with #afrovibes too.