With Black History Month now widely marked across the UK, October is generally recognised as a time for reflecting on the past. But how does history inform our understanding of the present, and how will current events shape the histories of the future?

In the wake of recent Black Lives Matter protests across the world, migrant-led arts organisation Maokwo has teamed up with the Belgrade Theatre to develop Black Futures, a pioneering programme that will ask urgent questions about where we go from here.

Taking place both online and in-person, Black Futures is a multi-disciplinary celebration of Black creativity, collaboration and entrepreneurship in the West Midlands. Expect visual art, photography, poetry, discussion, performance and live workshops as artists, businesses, cultural leaders and young people take over the building, testing out new ways of sharing creative work as we emerge from the Covid crisis.

Motherland – Ayesha Jones

In line with Maokwo’s ethos of giving space to diverse artists and amplifying unheard voices, the programme has been co-created by young people through its Yxng & Gxfted initiative, empowering them to tell their own stories and shape their vision for the future.

Events taking place in October and November will lay the groundwork for ongoing collaborations in the lead up to 2021, ensuring Black voices continue to be heard throughout our City of Culture year and beyond, long after Black History Month is over.

The programme includes photography and visual art exhibitions, workshops and discussion panels and the opportunity for black entrepreneurs to promote their businesses within the theatre’s foyer space.

Find our details about the full programme at
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