A brand new audio play has been created by Theatre Royal Stratford East in response to the death of George Flloyd.
Entitled 846, the piece will see 14 writers, led by the award-winning Roy Williams, come together to create a collection of short pieces exploring racial inequality and oppression. The production is directed by Ola Ince and features a soundscape by Donato Wharton.
The performance will then be adapted and presented live as part of Greenwich and Docklands International Festival on 12 September – you can find out more here.
Williams said: "Like the rest of the world, I was of course sickened at the sight of that video. The blatant murder of a fellow black man. There is no other way to describe it. As shocking as it was, the little voice inside my head was saying ‘You know you are going to write about this, so what are you waiting for? Get going!' I did, but I knew I couldn't do this alone. I reached out to a group of Black and Asian writers that I belong to on Facebook. They were as shocked and as sickened as I was. I told them what my little voice was telling me, that we should respond!"
Stratford East artistic director, Nadia Fall, said: "In normal times, we'd be front and centre with an artistic response to the George Floyd murder and the activism which has followed it. And though our doors are currently closed we were passionate about producing work that speaks to this moment and adds its voice to the vital push for change that is happening with the BlackLivesMatter movement."
Further writers involved in the project are Samina Baig, Gurpreet Kaur Bhatti, Eddie Botsio, Ishy Din, Clint Dyer, Nathan Powell, Lettie Precious, Avril E Russell, Carol Russell, Sumerah Srivastav, Selina Thompson, David KS Tse and Nat Marcello White.
The pieces will be performed by Stephanie Street, Paapa Essiedu, Tamara Lawrence, Shane Zaza, Dyer, Kevin Harvey, Jade Anouka, Cherrelle Skeete, Carol Russell, Will Edgerton, Jude Akuwudike, Doreene Blackstock, Carlos Byles, Dona Croll, Kobna Holdbrook-Smith, Martina Laird, Rebekah Murrell, Tuyen Do, Kirsty Bushell and Elijah Ansah.