One of the major research resources of the Multicultural Shakespeare project is a series of interviews with performers and directors who have contributed in Black and Asian Shakespeare in performance over the last four decades.
Click on the links below to go to the person entry in the British Black and Asian Shakespeare Performance Database where you will find the interview recording in the multimedia section. (Please note: This page is currently under (re)construction.)
Here is sample of a segment of an interview:
Joseph Charles on The Romans at the RSC:1972-3
...The idea was the development of Rome, so there would be people of all sorts. Trevor Nunn told us at the start: ‘I want the RSC to be an ensemble company, we want to
turn things around.’
His idea was to have 5, 6, black people…. And Calvin Lockhart was our black star.
There were six of us: Darien Angadi, Loftus Burton, Joe Marcell, Tony Osoba, Jason Rose and me, and we’re all physically different-looking, which was interesting.... We were the Volscians and the Romans were the white guys. It was a statement.
There were white actors coming to join us, made up darker as Volscians. Coriolanus, the first play, felt like an ensemble...There was a lot of improvisation: we had to discover who these people were. [Patrick Stewart played the Volscian leader Aufidius at Stratford, but he wasn't available for London.] This was quite traumatic. [The casting director] didn’t know what on earth to do.
She called me in and said, ‘Do you know any good black actors?’
I said: 'Yes.'
We were very much an ensemble, part of Trevor’s dream that he wanted an ensemble of different actors, different people, combining – and maybe life would have altered for black actors, but when we came into the Aldwych, it all changed....