Local and Community Journalism incl. POSITIVE PRESS

Daily  Info
Natty Mark is an Official Reviewer for  Daily Info

Interview  with  KANDA  BONGO  MAN

Review of  A  RAISIN  IN THE  SUN, entitled The Wisdom of Women

Review of  ROOTS REGGAE ALL-DAYER at the Chester Arms, entitled Reggae for a Reason

Review of CADILLAC RECORDS,  entitled Ballad with Beyonce

Review of C.D.I. YOUTH GRAND FINALE, entitled Immeasureable. A POSITIVE PRESS article.

Review of FLESH and BLOOD, entitled Crucial Cinema. A POSITIVE PRESS article.

Review of SANCHO - AN ACT of  REMEMBRANCE, entitled Blessed with Buoyancy

This is the link to the education pack, that Natty Mark contributed articles to....

Review of TWO plus TWO, entitled Little Heroes

Review of UPRISING, entitled A Ballad from Brixton.  A POSITIVE PRESS article.

Review of OUTTA SHASAMANE, the new album from Teddy Dan; entitled Rasta Emissary

Review of STALAG HAPPY, entitled Spirit of the Stalag

Review of  an arts awards training session, at the C.D.I.YOUTH CLUB. Entitled Young Shamans of Sound. A POSITIVE PRESS article. 

Natty Mark has also written articles for the Leys News monthly. This is a newspaper for Blackbird Leys, which is the largest council estate in Oxfordshire. As well as the ones featured here, another article can be read in the Natty Hi-Fi section.

Joy to Joseph Shambalala
This is the original, unedited version

Leys News June 2011 

Joy to Joseph Shambalala, as he approaches his 70thbirthday. For the joy he has given to the many thousands, over the last fifty years.
Last month, at the New Theatre, we were enraptured by Ladysmith Black Mambazo, the choral group he founded in the early 60s in Zululand, South Africa.
These Masters of Accapella, favourites of Nelson Mandela, who have thrilled audiences worldwide, done the same at this Oxford venue.
Beautiful voices, interwoven with exquisite harmonies. Apart from Joseph's voice, the one that delighted me the most, was that of one of his four sons in the group; a voice for lullabies and healing.
Alongside these classic voices, the choreography. Traditional dances from the Zulu homestead. Voice and body in sweet symbiosis. Natural flow of sound and movement.
Masters of humour, as well as accapella. Their gifts of comedy as well as culture. I felt the jubilance amongst them, their intention to have fun amongst themselves, like comrades of comedy. I never expected them to be the source of so much laughter. For those of us fortunate to have gathered there, we got a triple blessing; through the comedic antics, as well as the voices and the dances.
Joseph Shambalala, the music you've made continues to send sensations through my body. Little shiverings of euphoria and awe. Songs from the farms and mines of South Africa. Your music has enhanced the music of other greats, such as Stevie Wonder and Paul Simon. Great Ambassador of African Art; Ladsmith Black Mambazo, your enduring embassy. From the dreams of a Zulu man, to a standing ovation in an Oxford theatre.
I wish you joy, Joseph Shambalala, on August 28th, when you celebrate your 70thbirthday.

©Natty Mark Samuels, 2011.

Leys News February 2011

Originally entitled Under the Fig Tree.

Leys News July 2010


Leys News August 2010

Leys News September 2010

This is the original, unedited version of the Leys News October article.

River Pegasus

Like the Isis, the Pegasus intends to keep on flowing. So if we think of it
as a great water course, then Amantha Edmead, must be one of it's
outstanding tributaries.
Amantha Edmead, a former youth member, who went onto drama school
and stages nationwide; but who has always treasured her links with her
first stage.
She was commissioned to write an opening piece for the new theatre
building. We were presented with WATERS FLIGHT. A wonderful weave
of narrative, dance, song and drum. A homage to Mother Earth and
womanhood. Four African women, praising their beloved mother. A
libation to life; it's meanderings and blessings. A poem to Pegasus; to it's
creativity past and present and all the joyful discoveries. To River Pegasus,
collecting and nurturing as it goes along.
From the opening lantern procession,accompanied by Binghy
drumming, to the jembe and dumdum finale, those four women, each one a
singer and dancer, as well as an actress, delighted and enchanted us.
Fitting to see Euton Daley, the Artistic Director, invited to make libation
for the new structure. Euton, who I think of as the quiet heartbeat of
Pegasus Theatre. A respected elder in any African village.
The four came together and mixed a beautiful blend. The names of these
crucial ingredients, who gave us WATERS FLIGHT, alongside Amantha,
are Chi Nwaubani, Laty 'Nzinga' Saki and Ayo Edwards, performing under
the name Kuumba Nia, a company set up by Amantha.
Let me take a moment to salute Lukasz, a great drummer; it was a
privilege to play alongside him.
The quartet reminded me of the Ramunangi clan, of the Venda, South
Africa. Where only selected women(no men),are entrusted to perform the
important rituals for rain. We thank them for performing the opening
ritual,for the new Pegasus edifice.
Pegasus. It's good to know you'll always flow:something perennial. A
River Always. Supporting other tributaries, that emanate from you. In
celebrating Amantha Edmead, I honour the Pegasus Theatre.

©Natty Mark Samuels, 2010.

Leys News November, 2010
Published as Blessing Brazil in Black History Month