Sir Lenny Henry presents a joyous celebration of British-Caribbean life with a host of famous faces from art, music, entertainment TV and theatre.
Over two episodes, guests including Jazzie B, Floella Benjamin, Venice Biennale winner Sonia Boyce, David Harewood, Judi Love, Jamal Edwards, Trevor Nelson, Billy Ocean, Andi Oliver, Levi Roots, Benjamin Zephaniah and many more share their stories and experiences of Caribbean culture in the UK.
This celebration and examination is timely for Lenny, as he was told by his mother when he was a child that he had to go out and integrate with the local people of Dudley. He was confused about what that meant for him and his Caribbean-heritage siblings, as their household was ‘very Jamaican’.
Would integrating and ‘fitting in’ mean that he would lose his Caribbean culture? This series follows an older and wiser Lenny thinking about what integration actually means: is it a one-way journey, or does it work both ways? Is it a loss or a gain in cultural identity?
In part one, Lenny looks at the explosion of culture brought from the Caribbean by the post-war arrivals, from the music of calypso and ska to theatre and art. He explores the stories of activism, entrepreneurship and resilience behind these artforms and how the early cultural pioneers laid the foundations for the next generation.
Lenny also reflects on his own journey of trying to fulfil his parent’s ambitions to fit in to British society.
Airs Wednesday 22nd June at 9pm on BBC Two.