Belgrade reveals full cast for Swim, Aunty, Swim!

Published: 17 April 2024
Reporter: Steve Orme

The cast of Swim, Aunty, Swim!: Karlina Grace Paseda (Blessing), Anni Domingo (Fatu), Evelyn Duah (Ama) and (front) Sam Baker-Jones (Danny)

The Belgrade Theatre has completed the cast for Siana Bangura’s play Swim, Aunty, Swim! which will have its world première at the Coventry venue.

Joining the previously announced Anni Domingo as Fatu and Midlands-born Sam Baker-Jones as Danny will be Coventry-based Evelyn Duah who played Hippolyta in A New Way to Please You by Thomas Middleton and William Rowley for the Royal Shakespeare Company in 2005. She will take the role of Ama.

Karlina Grace-Paseda, who played Janet Mackenzie in Agatha Christie’s Witness for the Prosecution at London’s County Hall in 2019, will be Blessing in Swim, Aunty, Swim!

The play features Fatu, who is in search of a new life and a fresh start. Leaving London behind, she makes her way to Coventry where she forms a friendship with fellow members of her new church, Aunty Blessing and Aunty Ama.

This “fiery, entertaining and sharp-witted duo of West African women in their prime” are also navigating changes and transitions in their lives. On Ama’s whim, the three of them embark on a watery challenge that might just send them out of their depth.

Madeleine Kludje directs. Coventry’s Sarah Githugu is assistant director as part of the Regional Theatre Young Director Scheme Intensive Residencies which offers theatre companies funding to host a local director or theatre-maker in their organisation for 12 weeks.

A Belgrade Theatre production in association with tiata fahodzi, Swim, Aunty, Swim! has set design by Claire Winfield, costume design by Naomi Thompson, lighting design by Ryan Joseph Stafford, sound design by Duramaney Kamara, movement direction by Gaby Nimo, dramaturgy by Chinonyerem Odimba, drama therapy by Samantha Adams and production management by Adrian Sweeney.

Swim, Aunty, Swim! will run in the B2 auditorium at the Belgrade from Monday 20 May until Saturday 1 June.

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