The 2021 Black British Theatre Awards will be hosted by Grammy, Tony and Emmy Award-Winner, and two-time Academy Award Nominee Cynthia Erivo and Black Panther, Star Wars and Killing Eve actor Danny Sapani. Both highly acclaimed in theatre, film and television, the dynamic co-hosts will lead this year’s illustrious award show on 21st November 2021 at The Old Finsbury Town Hall in Clerkenwell, London.
Cynthia Erivo says: “I am so proud as a Black British actress to return from Los Angeles to the UK and see these important and ground-breaking awards being celebrated. There is no doubt that they are of great significance and I feel privileged to host this year’s event. It is important to represent, reflect and celebrate the abundance of Black talent Britain has to offer, now more than ever.”
Danny Sapani says: “I am overjoyed to be a co-host this year! The BBTA awards make visible and celebrate the incredible Black artists and practitioners working in our industry. Often overlooked or ignored by the mainstream media and award ceremonies. It is a vital chance to come together, share the love and support we all so richly deserve for the dedication and passion with which we execute our crafts and disciplines and inspire the next generation. An opportunity, I for one would be lost without.”
Other renowned names joining the co-hosts to present these unique and important awards are: Jason Pennycooke (Moulin Rouge!, Hamilton, Memphis, Rocketman), Miriam-Teak Lee (Hamilton, & Juliet), Dawn Hope (Follies, The Scottsboro Boys, Porgy and Bess, Coronation Street, Hollyoaks), Kenneth Olumuyiwa Tharp CBE (Former CEO, The Place, Director, Africa Centre, Soloist and Choreographer London Contemporary Dance Theatre), Mzz Kimberley aka Kim Tatum (Mzz Kim Creations), Matthew Xia (Artistic Director, Actors Touring Company, Director Amsterdam, Eden, Blood Knot and The Wiz), Brenda Emmanus OBE (Arts, Culture and Entertainment Correspondent most recently across BBC London and BBC Network news), Verdi Soprano Nadine Benjamin MBE, Layton Williams (Everyone’s Talking About Jamie, Bad Education, Benidorm, The Cleaner), Ahmet Ahmet (Outreach Director, Get Into Theatre on behalf of Andrew Lloyd Webber Foundation).
The Black British Theatre Awards (BBTAs) highlight excellence and leadership in the UK theatre sector through the acknowledgement and celebration of established and emerging diverse talent. An important part of the awards is to celebrate the legacy of Black theatre pioneers and their visionary contributions.
The BBTAs support and inspire young Black talent through award recognition and a year-round outreach programme, creating an impact by facilitating pathways from the educational system into the arts and empowering diverse talent to create and tell their stories. The purpose of the movement is for Black talent to be recognised and represented throughout the UK theatre sector.
BBTAs Co-founders and Co-directors Solange Urdang and Omar F Okai say:
“These historic and worthy awards have been gathering momentum over the last three years and we are thrilled to get so much support from such important figures within Black UK Theatre and beyond. We are also delighted to present Derek Griffiths MBE his BBTA Lifetime Achievement Award this year, Derek has had so much influence and inspired so many, including the both of us.”
Nominations for The Black British Theatre Awards 2021 can be found here: Black British Theatre Awards 2021 Nominees Announced!’