Brixton Village, London’s most diverse and vibrant market, is delighted to announce it has teamed up with community-focused arts organisation The Brixton Project to launch an exciting programme of cultural events in celebration of Windrush Day.
Launching on Tuesday 22 June, the cultural programme will kick-off with the opening of The Portrait Parlour – an interactive installation inspired by the work of renowned photographer Harry Jacobs that will see the reimagining of the artists’ most iconic portraits from the 60s and 70s. With thousands turning to him to record their major life events, Jacobs’ collection of works is a representation of milestones, friendship, family life and nostalgia which belied the hardship many people actually experienced. His rich backdrops and exotic scene-setting created a context to record the ambition and aspiration of this generation in a positive portrayal to share with friends and family back home.
What’s more, Brixton-based Pegasus Opera Company, home of multicultural opera, have created an original musical piece inspired by the journey and arrival of the Empire Windrush. Composed by Des Oliver, the song will launch on Windrush Day in partnership with ‘Black Apron’ film company to turn the song into a visual masterpiece. Spearheaded by Alison Buchanan – the only Black Caribbean female Artistic Director of an opera company in the UK, Pegasus Opera Company was founded with a mission to provide opportunities for artists of diverse backgrounds and promote opera among underserved communities to expand their cultural horizons. Head to their website to listen to the song here.
The Empire Windrush arrived in Tilbury in 1948, with a small number of its elders remaining. Having experienced considerable loss and loneliness as the result of the pandemic this year, Brixton Village and The Brixton Project have teamed up to help Windrush community elders re-unite with a special celebration lunch in the village on Tuesday 22nd at Lost in Brixton.
A live music programme in the Brixton Village Courtyard hosted by Brixton Village Lates from Saturday 26 to Sunday 27 June will see the Windrush Day celebrations continue throughout the weekend, with a blend of live and DJ performances celebrating the Windrush community.
Binki Taylor from The Brixton Project, says: “It is vital for residents and businesses throughout our community to be reminded of the historical significance of the Empire Windrush to Brixton. To solidify our support, recognition and appreciation. This year’s celebrations will be bigger and bolder with an exciting array of events. Join the call to action, sing loud at 10:27am on Tuesday the 22nd, come to our Portrait Parlour and remember those that had their portraits taken by Harry Jacobs, visit Brixton Village over the weekend and enjoy the music. We are excited to celebrate Windrush Day once more and hope the community of Brixton will join us in full force for these celebrations!”
Diana Nabagereka, General Manager of Brixton VIllage says: “In celebration of Windrush Day, we have a cultural programme that we are truly proud of. Partnering with The Brixton Project and Pegasus Opera Company – who are both working with Lambeth Council to deliver a program commemorating the Windrush Generation – we will be joining forces to champion a day that holds immense importance across South London. We hope to create something special to celebrate our community and the wonderful people that have made Brixton what it is today.”
We are asking everyone to raise their voices in solidarity! A unique version of Jimmy Cliff’s universally loved song ‘You Can Get It If You Really Want It’ will be played on Colourful radio at 10:27am on Tuesday 22nd June 2021. A specially recorded 90 second version of this song was made by Lambeth musicians and singers in 2020, produced by Lambeth music services, Guy Davies and Felix Taylor. We are encouraging all major stakeholders, retailers, workspaces and business to play the song at 10:27am on Windrush day to signify solidarity and to act as a collective call to action throughout Brixton.
PROGRAMME OF EVENTS
The Portrait Parlour – From Friday 18 June to Monday 28 June, Unit 11 Market Row, FREE Entry
Intergenerational Lunch with South London Cares – Tuesday 22 June, Lost in Brixton
Windrush Song – At 10:27am on Tuesday 22 June, played on Colourful Radio
Brixton Village Lates Live Music Programme – Saturday 26 and Sunday 27 June, Brixton Village Courtyard