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Young writers take centre stage at Belgrade and Arts Centre


By Barbara Goulden

ENG-ER-LAND, Warwick Arts Centre, Feb 16 & 17

I A'int Dumb, Belgrade B2, Feb 9-12

Two innovative new plays by young writers are being featured at Coventry's Belgrade Theatre and Warwick Arts Centre in February.

Rugby-born football fan Hannah Kumari (pictured above) will perform her one-woman-show ENG-ER-LAND at the Arts Centre on February 16 and 17 at the start of a UK tour.

Based very much on her own experiences, Hannah uses music and dance to explore the vital connecton between football and national identity.

She says: "I saw my first match at Coventry FC's Highfield Road ground in the mid-1990s and continue to support the Sky Blues to this day."

Did she experience racism? Certainly. Is she still a firm supporter? Absolutely.

Warwick Arts Centre is just one of a 15 venues where Hannah will be dramatisng her personal experiences in the stands as she struggled to be accepted into what was - and some would argue still is - an essentially white, male, working class world.

Details and tickets from: https://www.warwickartscentre.co.uk/

Meanwhile the Belgrade is offering the world

premiere of an LGBTQ+ play with the unlikely title: I Ain't Dumb.

Written by Coventry-born Tom Wright, this is on at The Belgrade's B2 stage from February 9 to 12 and features professional local actors Simon Castle, Harry Rose, Kavita Viyas, Sam Butters and Kimisha Lewis (pictured right).

It sounds like a lot of personal experience has gone into this play too, as Tom sets his story in an inner city Coventry school where a grieving student and her streetwise gay best friend fight to find their places in a world that appears to be unravelling before their eyes.

Details and tickets from: https://www.belgrade.co.uk/