About Carol Leeming MBE FRSA

Poet Playwright Director Singer /Songwriter Musician Composer Curator Lecturer

Carol Leeming MBE Speaker & Poetry for Black Lives in Music & Women In Jazz Media at EFG London Jazz Festival 2021

Carol Leeming gave a well received talk about her journey, the highs and lows, as a Black woman in the music industry, in particular the Jazz Music sector. Carol’s talk, introduced by Roger Wilson BliM, was well received, by a packed venue at Toulouse Lautrec Jazz Club on Nov 17th 2021, who enjoyed the humorous and at times more sombre delivery of the talk. Carol highlighted the barriers Black woman face in the music industry, along with incidents of racism and sexism she personally encountered. As well as peak moments of achievement and success, in England Europe and USA, in performance and hit records success and international touring. Carol concluded her fascinating and informative talk, with with a tribute poem for legendary Jazz Singer titled When Ella Split the Scene. during the performance Carol was painted by renknowned Visual Artist Gina Southgate.

The rousing applause after Carol’s Talk, from the audiences demonstrate their full appreciation of her contribution. It also set the scene, for a scintillating night of Jazz music sets from Jay Phelps, (Carol sang some vocals when he offered the mic by Jay Phelps – making new fans in the process), Daniel Higham and Jaz Kayser – Jazz FM rising Star Award Winner 2021.Overall, everyone felt it was a wonderful night well organised by Fiona Ross and her team fromf Women in Jazz Media-with funds generated from tickets sales being donated to the Mental Health Foundation,

Carol Leeming Directs Acquah & Co. at the Engine Room Omnibus Theatre

Carol Leeming MBE, has recently spent several days devising, R&D with Acquah Company at Omnibus Theatre London, in November, as Director for Acquah Company.The SANKOFA play has a number of hard hitting themes and issues, as well thing a grand sweep of identity and African culture.

Carol worked on the wonderful new play titled SANKOFA, written and performed by talented Nicole Acquah, in preparation for an abridged version for an ENGINE ROOM sharing on November 7.30pm 29/11/21 Omnibus Theatre. The week included work with two gifted musicians Susanna Paiso and Jane Butterfield, to work out the interplay between the performer and the live music/musicians onstage for the piece.

After the ENGINE ROOM sharing plans are afoot for Carol to direct the full production early in the 2022. Look out for further developments here.

Carol Leeming MBE London Triumph with new Choreopoem at A Time to Breathe Festival Oct 26th-31st 2021Curated by Greta Mendez MBE #attb2021 #attbfestival #atimetobreathe

Photo Credit Hana Kovacs Photography

Carol Leeming MBE returned in triumph to the stage, to debut a a new choreopoem, titled ‘The Dreadful Dance of Ms Iiniquity’ written specially for the A Time to Breathe Festival,202 curated by Greta Mendez MBE a pioneering legend of Black Arts. The performances were at the The Theatre formerly Stockwell Playhouse Theatre 208 Wandsworth Rd SW8 2JU. See here: an interview with Carol prior to the performances with Theatre Stop Magazine https://www.theatrefullstop.com/2021/10/25/multi-disciplinary-artist-carol-leeming-mbe-talks-ahead-of-her-london-theatrical-debut-as-part-of-the-inaugural-a-time-to-breathe-festival-which-opens-tomorrow/

The two performances of the chorepoem, during the festival received standing ovations from the audiences. with some particularly strong responses from the audiences a selection follows: One audience member felt moved to write publicly on facebook:

Last night I had the immense honour to witness the inaugural performance of Carol Leeming’s, deeply moving and breathtaking -The Dreadful Dance of Ms Iniquity; the imaginary trial of a fictional black woman who has betrayed her lineage.

Carol staged a tour de force, totally absorbed into her characters, she took the audience on a rollercoaster ride of despair, rebellion and finally hope. 

She bore the magnitude of the struggles of the ancestors; personified the injustices at the heart of the Wlindrush scandal, the Black Lives Matter movement and the Grenfell atrocity; and in doing so, shone like a spiritual beacon for young poets and actors to follow in her wake. In speaking with Carol after the performance, she stated “this is very much a work in progress” and I for one can only wonder in awe at the heights that this already magnum opus can be taken to Floyd Wilson Audience Member

Or other artists in the audience:

It was terrifyingly beautiful, solemn, majestic and edifying. Ray Shell Writer /Director /Actor /Publisher  

I had the pleasure of watching Carol Leeming one woman choreopoem! It was emotional, truthful,and traumatic in parts. You cannot watch this performance and not be moved in some way. Judith Jacob Actor TV /Theatre, Co- Founder Black Theatre Co-op, Bibi Crew, Radio Host Injection Radio.com

Political Performance Art which uses dance theatre spoken word song to convey Caribbean colonials racism pain and sorrow..powerful`! Michael Jospeh Dancer /Choreographer Lecturer

Important Consultancies successfully concluded: Leicester Black Asian & Ethnic Minority Music Education Network Re-launch & Black Curriculum for Leicester Schools & Arts Organisation

Carol Leeming MBE has concluded two very important, historic consultancies and reports, Firstly for Leicester Music Education Hub to re-launch the Leicester Black Asian & Ethnic Minority Music Education Network. Carol helped to set up this network in 2019, which experienced a hiatus due to COVID 19 Lockdown and Leicester Music Hub major re-structuring. Carol’s tasks also included, to help continue the development of the Leicester Black Asian Ethnic Minority Music Education Network, to address the music education needs, of culturally diverse communities in the city of Leicester. As well to assist with the De-Colonisation of the Music Education Curriculum of the Leicester/shire Music Education Hub, Schools and other partners.

Secondly, was the commission for The City Classroom (an organisation of Leicester Schools & Arts Organisations) Leicester, to scope, collate, information, and learning resources, book lists etc. for Black Curriculum for School Teachers and Arts Organisation Members. To also make contact with the Black Curriculum Organisation in Hackney, with a view to their bespoke services. As well to identify a local Black Professional Cohort of Teachers, Educationalists and Activists working in Black Curriculum. It is hoped, that there will be a city wide conference in the near future. To discuss Black Curriculum with Principals, Head Teachers.Teachers and other interested stakeholders. To discuss the initial steps, as how to embed Back Curriculum in all Leicester schools going forward.

The above projects, are of immense importance at this time. Given the very diverse demographics of the city of Leicester, and the urgent need to better address inequalities, and to offer more cultural diversity, in our cultural education. With special regard also to #Black Lives Matter, it is imperative, at this time for positive action. It is hoped in both the above cases, the recommendations of both reports by Carol, are fully implemented, as a matter of urgency. Along with with the required commitment, substantial investment of financial, and other resources. To make the required demonstrable impact, to address the long standing exclusion, that has been to the detriment of culturally diverse communities in Leicester.

Polymath Carol Leeming MBE FRSA joins BBC Open Music Training Programme to work on BBC Proms Concert 2022 the BBC Celebration 100th Broadcast Year

Carol Leeming MBE FRSA has been accepted as a Trainee, on to the new BBC Open music Programme 2021 to work on BBC Proms Concert/s at the Royal Albert Hall which is in its 150th year. Carol will be on the programme for 12 months p/time to work for BBC Prom Concerts for 2022, the BBC Celebration Year of its 100th Broadcast.

Carol from Leicester East Midlands, is one of 30, applicants selected, from an overwhelming large number of applications. On offer as part of the programme is a BBC Mentor, Master Classes, access across the BBC Network. As well the BBC Staff Orchestras and Choirs. A truly wonderful and exciting opportunity to have, with the Trainees eager to share ideas with BBC and equally the BBC keen to hear and develop their ideas.

Carol has been moved, by the many messages of congratulations , she has received on social media and plans to make the most of this unique opportunity. As she has had a long held interest in the BBC Proms, Orchestras and Choirs Classical music, along side her work in Contemporary and Globals Musics.

Exciting Times Ahead Carol Leeming MBE FRSA Diary Dates & Great News!!!

For Carol Leeming MBE FRSA 2021 It has been quite a year all told all as with other people folks, with personal sad losses, upsets… however… 

Carol is now very pleased, so very excited to share her forthcoming Diary Dates.

Also thrillingly with London dates included

Carol is now just getting back to her passion her love of making her own art and commenting with others!!! 

Sept 15th Poet & Contributor Writers Mosaic Sonic Vibrations Project Launch & Party London Promoter Michael McMullin Khadija Ibrahim, Levi Tefari, Courtia Newland, Xuxu Legs Eleven, Mikael Calandra Achode, Dubmorphology

Oct 2nd World debut Jupiter Butterfly Music Special Guest Carol Leeming& The Random Acts of Senseless Beauty of Andrea Kenny & Token Boy Leicester info https://bit.ly/3mOb9WV

12th October BHM Chair Black Arts & Education Panel City Classroom Leicester Cultural Education Partnership https://serendipity-uk.com/events/black-arts-in-education-3/… Leicester

25th -31st October World debut Performance ‘The Dreadful Dance of Ms Iniquity’ new choreopoetry Time to Breathe Festival London Curator Greta Mendez https://www.atimetobreathe.co.uk/line-up

Artists https://www.atimetobreathe.co.uk/line-up

Nov 17th EFG London Jazz Festival Guest Speaker Women in Jazz Media & BLiM (Black Lives in Music) https://bit.ly/3BpF8sSome

EXCLUSIVE: YOU HEARD IT FIRST – WONDERFUL NEWS!!!

A total dream come true… for Carol as she has been been accepted (1000+ applied!!) for the BBC Open Music Programme for 2021-22, as a paid trainee for 12 days over 1 year with a BBC Mentor, Master Classes, plus an opportunity to create a concert for BBC Proms 2022 see article with more information here https://bit.ly/3mHK8nO

Poetry & Covid 19 Anthology (Shearsman Press) Outstanding International Poetry Collaborations Excel!

Carol Leeming MBE FRSA, poetry is featured alongside her poetry collaborator Rakshan Rizwan, in a new ground breaking, excellent Poetry and Covid Anthology, of international poetry collaborators responding to the unprecedented world wide pandemic. The poetry anthology is published by Shearsmans Press, it was launched online in February 2021, with an event hosted by Anthony Caleshu and Rory Waterman, Plymouth University and Nottingham University respectively, and featured poets reading their poems with Q&A. It is worth noting, during this time of pandemic, poetry, and poetry anthologies on this subject, have flourished. They are seen as essential, as people have sought poetry to express and document, a common humanity, in the face of lockdowns and a perilous health crisis.

However, this particular collection, most deftly edited by Anthony Caleshu and Rory Waterman, with an illuminating and expansive introduction, is somewhat different. As it features very diverse highly acclaimed poets from across the world and Britain, working together to craft their divergent poetic responses to the Covid 19 pandemic, the scale of which we have never known before since the early part of the century.. The 19 pairs of poets selected, were commissioned last year, and their contributions form part of a joint project with Plymouth University and Nottingham Trent University funded by AHRC. Another part of this project, is a rather busy website which has seen unparalleled activity, in terms of visits and also the many poetry contributions, responding to Covid 19, from a diverse range of people across the world and UK.

All the above elements: the outstanding anthology, diverse online poems and video poetry responses, posted on the Poetry and Covid 19 Website. All amount to an incredibly important body of work, to be utilised, discussed and cherished for many years to come, by generations of academics, poets, artists and many others. Such. is the abundance of creativity, power and providence this historic collection of work affords.

The pairs of contributors are: Sinéad Morrissey and Jan Wagner (trans. Iain Galbraith); Carol Leeming and Rakhshan Rizwan; George Szirtes and Alvin Pang; Vahni Capildeo and Vivek Narayanan; Rory Waterman and Togara Muzanenhamo; Rachael Allen and Ilya Kaminsky; Zoë Skoulding and Yana Lucila Lema Otavalo; Inua Ellams and Omar Musa; Matthew Welton and Hazel Smith; Vidyan Ravinthiran and Arvind Krishna Mehrotra; Anthony Caleshu and Mariko Nagai; Selima Hill and Wang Xiaoni (trans. Eleanor Goodman); Declan Ryan and Linda Stern Zisquit; David Herd and Sharmistha Mohant; Luke Kennard and Hwang Yu Won (trans. Jake Levine); André Naffis-Sahely and Stacy Hardy; Harriet Tarlo and Craig Santos Pérez; Jennifer Cooke and Jèssica Pujol Duran; Momtaza Mehri and A. E. Stallings.

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Links:

https://www.shearsman.com/store/Caleshu-and-Waterman-(eds)-Poetry-and-Covid-19-https://poetryandcovid.com

Black History Video Loughborough University #Black Lives Matter

In the wake of the momentous world wide movement, in response to #Black Live Matter movement. We find ourselves in the arts cultural sector, required to take necessary anti-racist actions, to decolonize curriculums and practices, create more opportunity for culturally diverse groups, in order to dismantle systemic institutional racism in society.

Further more , taking such action will galvanise and promote Equality Diversity and Inclusion-, social justice and equality, across the board for Women, LGBTQ Disabled Groups and all other currently excluded groups.

I was fortunate during Black History Month for Loughborough University, to give a talk on British Black History which is British History ‘my Black History is your History is our History’ This was well received, it offers crucial knowledge to acquire ,to be able to understand the UK, the World, its increasingly diverse society and communities. To promote respect and understanding, and importantly for White people, to learn to listen how to become better allies, to understand racism, as a toxic legacy of Slavery, Imperialism and Colonialism, and how it still its effects society today. To then learn how best to make change now, to effectively dismantle centuries old disadvantage and disparities. We owe it to current and future generations to do this. I do hope you will watch the video below and share with colleagues. In addition there are additional links to see and share re #BLM to become an ally.

Video https://www.lboro.ac.uk/news-events/black-history-month/

Links for White Allies – To Understand the Struggle Against Racism White Supremacy & Privilege

Books

Why I Am no longer Talking to White People About Race by Reni Eddo-Lodge

https://www.waterstones.com/book/why-im-no-longer-talking-to-white-people-about-race/reni-eddo-lodge/9781408870587

We New Stories: Challenging Toxic Myths Behind Our Age of Discontent by Nesrine Malik

https://www.waterstones.com/book/we-need-new-stories/nesrine-malik/9781474610421

Web Spaces

https://www.artscouncil.org.uk/advice-and-guidance/culture-change-toolkit#section-1

https://www.imperial.ac.uk/equality/resources/how-to-be-a-white-ally/

https://www.stophateuk.org/category/racism/

https://www.anothermag.com/design-living/12573/practical-ways-to-fight-racism-in-the-uk-today-black-lives-matter-london

Carol Leeming MBE FRSA #TEDx Talk For Women Leading Social Change De Montfort University November 24th November

Join Carol Leeming MBE FRSA who is looking forward to the forthcoming #TEDx Event De Montfort University titled Women Leading Social Change. Carol’s talk will focus on historical and present day Feminist i.e Women’s Movements and issues The event is FREE see booking details here https://www.eventbrite.ca/e/tedxdemontfortuwomen-women-leading-social-change-in-leicester-registration-124284868387?fbclid=IwAR3X9qhbBWZJlJm_qS-KNJX471lJlfuFfgcmk0m4RHLY5r1mc7251j8E3Yw