Dance to Windrush movement

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Leeds will host a World Premiere at West Yorkshire Playhouse next month as 2018 marks the 70th Anniversary of the arrival of SS Empire Windrush to the UK.

Windrush was the ship that brought the first large group of immigrants from the Caribbean and famously began the post-war immigration boom that was to radically change British society.

Leeds based Phoenix Dance Theatre will present a new dance piece called “Windrush: Movement of the People” from February 7 to 10.

The production begins in Jamaica and features personal stories including the daily exclusion and racism the newcomers faced.

Artistic director and choreographer Sharon Watson, whose family came to the UK as part of the ‘Windrush Generation’, said: “I want to capture both the excitement and the upset of this significant event. Windrush will highlight both the struggles and the good times the Jamaican community experienced during those early years. People were excited to come to the UK on the promise of work and a better life but it was not the case for all.

“It is an uplifting dance production but shines a light on an important era of the history of black people in the UK.’