Archived Event

Blake, Cook, Hunter and more
An Inconvenient Black History of British Musical Theatre 1900-1950
Tue 21 Sep 2021, 7.30pm
Archived Event
This concert will be approximately 2 hours in duration, including an interval

Important Information

This concert was live-streamed as part of the Autumn 2021 Series. The video is no longer online but other concerts are available to watch in full here: Wigmore Hall Concert Video Library


  • Shanté Campbelldirector
  • Sean Mayespresenter
  • Sarah K Whitfieldpresenter
  • Jonathan Andrew Humesinger
  • Esme Searssoprano


      • In Dahomey overture selections
        (arranged by Sean Mayes)
      • Standin’ in the need o’ prayer
        (arranged by John C. Payne)
  • Jerome Kern
      • Stepping Stones
      • Once in a Blue Moon
  • Eubie Blake
      • Memories of You
        (arranged by Sean Mayes)
      • There'll Be Some Changes Made into Lift Ev'ry Voice and Sing (Johnson)
        (arranged by Sean Mayes)


This concert celebrates the heritage and importance of Black music and performance to Wigmore Hall and the wider British musical theatre industries. At the invitation of John Gilhooly, Sean Mayes and Sarah K. Whitfield will also launch their new book An Inconvenient Black History of British Musical Theatre 1900-1950 (Methuen Drama). Through innovative hybrid concert and discussion form, Mayes and Whitfield will discuss the hidden history the book uncovers, the urgency of uncovering the work of Black creative practitioners, and what it means for the future.

West End performer Jonathan Andrew Hume (Come from Away, The Lion King) and emerging soprano Esme Sears will join Mayes in performances of songs and repertoire that re-centre Black musical experience. The concert is directed by Shanté Campbell.

This concert is supported by the Canada-UK Foundation

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