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Breakin’ Convention – International Hip Hop Festival

On 23rd and 24th May, Breakin’ Convention (the international festival of hip-hop dance theatre) came to Curve, Leicester for the first time. Breakin’ Convention is an award-winning and critically acclaimed organisation that represents the origins and evolution of hip hop culture from around the world and around the corner. The festival brings dancers, rappers, beat-boxers and graffiti artists into the theatre.

I was brought in to produce two films for the event: one documenting the festival and a second short-film on hip-hop culture in Leicester. This second film will explore hip-hop’s transient nature and influence amongst other music genres, centred around celebrated DJ Jon 1 st who is an online DMC world champion with a history of competing in hip-hop DJ battles.

The festival, hosted by Jonzi D, Mr Shay and John Berkavitch, was a great success featuring international acts such as the Soweto Skelton Movers, Tentacle Tribe and Just Dance. I am now in the process of putting the first film together.

Just Dance

Just Dance – Breakin’ Convention, CURVE, Leicester

‘Consequences’, a Film by Strictly Arts

As part of Strictly Arts, I’ve spent the last week shooting an anti-knife crime film in and around Birmingham. The project is funded by Derby City Council and the film will be released later this year. This is Strictly Arts first film and has been a lot of fun to shoot. It stars Keiren Amos, Khalid Daley, Phoebe Frances Brown, Reisz Amos, Aimee Powell and Nathaniel McIntosh, and is directed by Strictly Arts Artistic Director, Corey Campbell.

I’m delighted to say that the film, entitled ‘Consequences’, has caught the attention of a high-profile organisation and Strictly Arts are currently negotiating a commission to extend the film into a series. Hopefully, I’ll be able to release more information about this soon!

Khalid Daley

Khalid Daley

Special thanks to everyone who’s been involved with making this project a success.

Open Art Surgery

For Open Art Surgery at CURVE, Leicester, I worked with actor and producer Akshay Sharma to produce an original film entitled, ‘It’s An Art’. Open Art Surgery (formerly The Surgery) offers Hip Hop theatre performers and companies (dancers, musicians, emcees and visual artists) the opportunity to develop and experiment with new ideas, share new work publicly and receive mentorship from Jonzi D and other Hip Hop Theatre aficionados.

‘It’s an Art’ was envisioned on the Monday and premiered at Curve on the Friday. Every minute in between was spent solidifying the concept, composing the music, filming, editing and teching for the show, whilst under the mentorship of John Berkovitch.

The film was very well received and has since been sumbitted for various festivals and awards including the We The Peoples Film Festival.

Directed by Kieran Vyas
Starring Akshay Sharma
Original Music by PJ Govind

Green Leaves Fall & Freeman

‘From despair to hope, then straight back to where we start. Disillusion only comes when there is hope found in our heart.’

For Black History Month, Strictly Arts are proud to present two productions to Belgrade Theatre, Coventry – ‘Green Leaves Fall’ and ‘Freeman’. I put together a trailer for each show which you can watch below!

Green Leaves Fall – Brixton, 1981. In the aftermath of the riots, 14 year old Kieran Brown finds himself in unfamiliar surroundings as he is adopted by an upper class family in Oxford. His new family send him to St Edwards, a prestigious boys school, with his new brother George. We follow his journey as he strives to fit into this new environment, as his classmates struggle to accept this new face and as he tries to find his identity.

Freeman – A brand new collaboration with award-winning writer Camilla Whitehill. Freeman utilises physical theatre to interrogate the tension between mental health and the justice system. Inspired by the true story of William Freeman, a black slave who was put on trial in 19th Century New York and the first case to raise ‘insanity’ as a defence.

“Green Leaves Fall’s genius is in its careful balancing of comedy with gut-wrenching drama. Often laugh-out-loud funny with touching moments of naivety and young love, it begins in the familiar mode of a coming-of-age tale before moving into darker territory.” – What’s On Live