The Ancestors: by Lakesha Arie-Angelo.

A film from the National Youth Theatre, English Heritage, and the University of Warwick

"Here we stand.

Feet on the soil of this strange land.

But here we are.

Here we stand"

A clique of Caribbean maroon warrior women, a general of Haiti and his right-hand man, an ex-enslaved couple reclaiming their land, a group of Black French Caribbean soldiers held captive in Portchester and their wives traveling across the Atlantic to be reunited with them. These are The Ancestors- manifesting in our world, in the hopes we can stop history from repeating itself, but do we really hold the key? What dark forces are still currently at play?

The Ancestors was originally written as a site-specific outdoor promenade theatre production exploring the voices of Black revolutionaries that history has continued to silence through the grounds of Portchester Castle. It was adapted into a filmed performance following an outbreak of COVID-19 in the company in the summer of 2021.

The production is designed by Libby Todd, with movement direction by Sara Dos Santos, music by composer Romarna Campbell, sound design by Munotida Chinyanga, dramaturgy by Gail Babb, and Assistant Directors Anna Chauri Phillips and Udoka Maya.

Writer Lakesha Arie-Angelo and Director Jade Lewis will be available for Q&A.

The Ancestors is part of ‘Freedom and Revolution’, a Shout Out Loud initiative, and is supported by the National Lottery Heritage Fund, the Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC), part of UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) and the David Toguri Bursary Fund. National Youth Theatre is grateful to its principal supporters Arts Council England, the Culture Recovery Fund and Playful Productions for their support of The Ancestors. The research and development for The Ancestors has been supported by Shout Out Loud and the University of Warwick. 

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