Comedians often use history in their material. In this interactive session we’ll piece together a visual tapestry of the best historical comedy from popular and lesser-known comics from the 1960s to now.
We’ll place their amusing observations on a historical timeline of international struggle for Black equality, and show how comedy can be educational – be prepared to laugh your head off and learn about world history at the same time! Presented by Tony Warner.
Tony Warner is a community activist and guerrilla historian. He has been exhibiting educational and empowering films about African/Caribbean history in museums, art galleries, restaurants and youth clubs since 2000. He pioneered community partnerships with and lectured at the Imperial War Museum, National Portrait Gallery, Museum of Docklands and the BFI – which all led to huge increases in Black audiences.
Tony is the co-founder and chair of the African Odysseys programme. This grassroots initiative has been exhibiting African diaspora films plus Q&As on a monthly basis at the BFI Southbank since 2007. It is the only such programme in the country and has been attended by tens of thousands of people. He is also the founder of Black History Walks in London, a group which explores the Caribbean and African history of the capital via 12 guided walks, talks, films, courses, bus tours and river cruises. The tours have been featured on various national and international media such as CNN, BBC, ITV, The Guardian, Channel 4 etc. Since 2011, in an ongoing collaboration with the Nubian Jak charity he has sponsored five Black historical blue plaques across London and researched ten more.
As a management consultant specialising in diversity, he has trained various corporate, government and educational agencies; including creating a 26-week course for pupils in primary and secondary schools to improve self-esteem, behaviour and academic performance.
Tony is the author of Black History Walks in London Volume 1. The book explores the African/Caribbean presence in London over the last 2000 years. It is due to be published by Jacaranda Books in October 2021. He is currently working on a GCSE history book on migration and Black British Civil Rights for use in schools.
A PRYOR ENGAGEMENT
Richard Pryor: Live in Concert
Wed 1 Sep 20:50; Fri 1 Oct 18:00
Some Call It Loving
Thu 2 Sep 20:40; Mon 20 Sep 18:00 (+ pre-recorded intro)
Lady Sings the Blues
Sat 4 Sep 11:30; Wed 15 Sep 13:50; Mon 27 Sep 20:20
The Bingo Long Traveling All-Stars & Motor Kings
Sat 4 Sep 20:30; Sat 25 Sep 14:45
Mon 6 Sep 14:30; Fri 17 Sep 20:40 (+ pre-recorded intro); Tue 5 Oct 17:35
Jo Jo Dancer, Your Life Is Calling
Tue 7 Sep 18:10 (+ pre-recorded intro); Mon 4 Oct 20:45
African Odysseys Presents: The Black History of Comedy
Fri 10 Sep 18:15
Fri 10 Sep 21:00; Tue 14 Sep 18:00; Sat 18 Sep 20:10
Sat 11 Sep 17:50; Tue 28 Sep 20:50
Sat 11 Sep 20:45; Wed 22 Sep 18:15
Sun 12 Sep 15:15; Wed 29 Sep 20:45
Which Way Is Up?
Wed 15 Sep 21:00; Sun 26 Sep 18:10
Lost Highway (unconfirmed)
Thu 16 Sep 17:30; Tue 5 Oct 20:30
Richard Pryor: A Comedy Genius
Thu 16 Sep 18:15
Sun 19 Sep 18:10; Fri 1 Oct 20:30
Mon 20 Sep 21:00; Sun 3 Oct 18:10
Richard Pryor: Live on the Sunset Strip
Tue 21 Sep 18:00 (+ discussion); Mon 4 Oct 18:20
Richard Pryor… Here and Now
Wed 22 Sep 20:45; Sat 2 Oct 18:00
Thu 23 Sep 20:45; Sun 3 Oct 15:15
A Pryor Engagement was originally programmed by Nellie Killian for BAMcinématek in 2013
This season is presented in partnership with We Are Parable
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Programme notes and credits compiled by the BFI Documentation Unit
Notes may be edited or abridged
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