My Father and Easter…

TheDarkDisciples

EASTER ALWAYS MAKES ME THINK OF MY FATHER (seated far right).

Not only because today marks the (12th) anniversary of his passing. But also because, although he never sought out a career as an actor (as far as I’m aware), he was part of one of the UK’s first Black theatre companies called The Negro Theatre Workshop.

Founded in 1963 by the Trinidadian-born theatrical and literary agent, actress and cultural activist, Pearl Connor and her husband Edric (also a renowned Calypsonian singer and actor in his own right), they were pioneering and ardent campaigners for the recognition and promotion of African Caribbean arts.

In 1966 they produced an interpretation of the Easter story entitled The Dark Disciples, which was the first ever all-Black production televised on the BBC. It also represented Britain at the First World Festival of Negro Arts in Dakar, Senegal. My father was due to go on this tour, but had to decline due to a little forthcoming co-production of his own with my mother Sheila… 

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