A collection of plays – ‘For the Reckord’ – by pioneering Jamaican playwright, Barry Reckord has been released in the United Kingdom (UK).
The book, which was edited by renowned Jamaican theatre director, Yvonne Brewster, was officially launched at an event, held at the Royal Court Theatre in Sloane Square, London, on October 27.
High Commissioner to the United Kingdom, His Excellency Anthony Johnson was among the guests in attendance at the launch.
High Commissioner to the United Kingdom, His Excellency Anthony Johnson (standing, right), injects some humour in his address at the launch of ‘For the Reckord’, in London, on October 27.
Ms Brewster, one of the founders of the Barn Theatre in Jamaica and Talawa in London, told the guests that the book was part of her ongoing campaign to raise awareness about the history and importance of black theatre in Britain.
She said that while participating in a project to catalogue all the Black plays that had been performed in Britain over the past century, she found that Barry Reckord was almost unrecognised, despite being a prolific and pioneering playwright.
High Commissioner Johnson, who informed the guests that he and the playwright are cousins, read a message from Mr. Reckord, who is in Jamaica and was unable to attend, due to illness.
The legendary British writer and literary editor, Diana Athill, who wrote the introduction to the book, also spoke at the launch.
Mr. Reckord, who was born in Jamaica in 1926, was among the first modern Caribbean playwrights to have his work produced in England and is regarded as a trailblazer by many who came after him.
He had over a dozen plays staged in Britain, starting with Flesh to a Tiger, which was shown in 1958 at the Royal Court Theatre.
‘For the Reckord’ features Flesh to a Tiger and two more of Reckord’s better-known plays, Skyvers and White Witch.