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Its not all black and white theatre performance essay

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On Thursday, October 23rd 2008, we saw a production of 'It's not all Black and White' written by Hannah Philips at the Birmingham Library Theatre. The play is set in England, in the late 17th century, where a ship had travelled to. On board were black slaves and white masters. It was written in honour of it being black history month and was performed as remembrance. It tracks the passage from captivity to freedom for the slaves. The play shows examples of how the slaves were treated and some of the experiences they may have had in this foreign country to their own. In the first nine minutes of the play there were only two main actors: Neo Mthimkulu and Fabio Balde. Right at the beginning of the performance, Neo played a slave in the dance. The dance at the beginning was choreographed to convey the struggle and the hard times the black slaves went through during the slave trade. When the music started she shuffled forward on each beat with her hands out in front of her crossed over at the wrist. ...read more.


There is then a blackout, as Neo gets ready to start her scene with Fabio. Neo and Fabio also played a couple who had had a baby in England, as opposed to their own country. At the start of the scene Neo was standing, facing the audience with her new born baby in her hands. She made a speech on how her baby had been born England rather than her home country. She seemed to act very motherly towards the child and to be very proud of his existence. She showed this by rocking the baby up and down and occasionally looking in to the baby's face. This made her look like a caring mother who loved her baby a lot. It indicated that she is using her maternal instincts and is taking care of her baby. However, she is also unhappy at the fact that her child had been born in England. This emotion was put across to the audience by her as she stood strong and tall with her back straight showing her opposition to the idea of a British African child. ...read more.


She has its best interests at heart. She looks behind her and looks towards Fabio and gulps showing a nervous disposition and that she is really worried and frightened for her baby's welfare. When Fabio smothers the baby's face, therefore killing the child, Neo is very distraught and grieved at her baby's death. She runs to Fabio and hits at him and punches him in his arm as an attempt to get him to stop harming her son. She cries heavily heaving out sobs, using her whole body to portray how distressed she is and how miserable she is that she lost her only son who was only an hour old. Overall, from how Neo Mthimkulu has conveyed all the different emotions in all the different circumstances, she seems like a very effective actor who is able to mould into different characters well and can adjust from situation to situation. She made the scene become real to the audience and expressed the real meaning of the play to an excellent standard. The audience really did see that this play showed the reality and the truth of the Black Slave Trade. ?? ?? ?? ?? Sherlaine Hinds 10H ...read more.

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