The 2022 Black British Theatre Awards will take place on Sunday 16th October in association with The National Theatre, London. 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.
Nominations for this year’s awards opened Thursday 1st June and close Monday 1st August. These public nominations include productions from 1st August 2021 to 31st July 2022. The BBTAs team are also proud to announce the addition of three new awards: Best Understudy/Swing in a Theatre Production, Outstanding Performance in a Play
and Outstanding Performance in a Musical. The public are invited to visit blackbritishtheatreawards.com to register and submit their nominations.
The 2021 BBTAs were 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 cohosts lead last year’s awards at The Old Finsbury Town Hall in Clerkenwell, London.
Other renowned names who have presented at these unique and important awards in the past include: 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 (THEN Director of Africa Centre, Former CEO of The Place, Soloist and Choreographer London Contemporary Dance Theatre) 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) and Layton Williams (Everyone’s Talking About Jamie, Bad Education, Benidorm, The Cleaner). The 2022 hosts and presenters will be announced in the coming months.
About The Black British Theatre Awards
The Black British Theatre Awards (BBTAs) was established to raise the profile of Black British creatives and performers who have not only influenced the UK’s artistic legacy but have created an impact on an international level. October 2019 saw the inaugural ceremony of the BBTAS, launched to coincide with Black History Month. This new addition to the British theatre calendar was held at the captivating Old Finsbury Town Hall.
The BBTAs were created to target the leadership of the theatre sector, celebrating the diverse talent that already exists in the UK and championing the theatre pioneers whose contributions are well established, as well as supporting the young people coming from education into the arts to empower them to tell their stories and continue the movement. As the theatre industry continues to recover from the global pandemic and with the heightened awareness of diversity due to the Black Lives Matter Movement, the BBTAs are an opportunity to acknowledge those with the collective mission to create real change and have embedded representation in their infrastructure.
The next generation and the BBTAs
To inspire the next generation, the BBTAs fund scholarships for young Black talent in the UK to access training in performing arts whilst being mentored by established Black theatre professionals involved with the awards. The BBTA Outreach Programme will be re-launching later this year and will include a mentoring programme for young people, as well as in-person courses and theatre visits.