Meet our heroes
The Voices of Black Folk- In Unexpected Places brings to life great heroes from the past, giving us the opportunity to truly learn their story.
Septimius Severus, played by Lloyd Reid, was an African emperor of Rome, who campaigned in northern Britain in an attempt to subdue the Scots and expand the empire, and who for a short period made the city of York the de facto capital of the Roman empire.
Queen Philippa of Hainault
Queen Philippa of Hainault, played by Misie Goode, who thanks to Netflix’s ‘Bridgeton’, has surfaced more prominently as a previous member of the British royal family. Married to King Edward III in 1328, Queen Philippa bore him thirteen children and in so doing sowed the seeds of discontent among the Plantagenets that would lead to the Wars of The Roses- a series of civil wars fought over control of the English throne in the mid-to-late fifteenth century.
Played by Tosin Olomowewe, Ottobah was a former slave turned abolitionist and political activist who was kidnapped at the age of 13 from the ‘Gold Coast’ and taken to the Caribbean. Purchased by a British merchant, he was brought to England and eventually given his freedom.
Ottobah made London his home and fought tirelessly for the “immediate” abandonment of the evil institution of slavery, becoming the first African to be published in English. His book, ‘Thoughts and Sentiments of The Wicked Traffic Of The Slavery And Commerce Of the Human Species’ (1787) caused a sensation with its unapologetic demand for abolition.
Joseph Bologne, Chevalier de Saint George
Joseph Bologne, Chevalier de Saint-George, played by Mico Simonde, was a man with many talents, he was a French classical composer, virtuoso violinist, a conductor of the leading symphony orchestra in Paris, a renowned champion fencer and an anti-slavery abolitionist and commander of his own regiment in the French Revolution ‘the Légion nationale des Américains & du midi’- the first all-black regiment in modern European history.
Woman of the Silures
Voices of Black Folk- In Unexpected Places will also be exploring The Silures who were a powerful and warlike tribe or tribal confederation of ancient Britain.
The Silures were known to have dark complexions and black curly hair. Due to their appearance they were believed to have crossed over from Spain at an earlier date.