Matthew Xia, artistic director the Actors Touring Company since November 2018, has been nominated for Best Director for this year’s Black British Theatre Awards (BBTAs). Joining in the same category are Ryan Calais Cameron and Tristan Fynn-Aiduenu (For Black Boys Who Have Considered Suicide When the Hue Gets Too Heavy), and Dermot Daly (My Voice Was Heard But It Was Ignored).
Celebrating Black excellence both on stage and in creative roles, the awards themselves will be taking place on Sunday 16 October at the National Theatre in London.
Solange Urdang and Omar F Okai, co-directors of the BBTAs, said today: “2022 brings an unprecedented year for the BBTAs in support from industry recognition and creative growth. The public votes have quadrupled since 2021, heralding a clear and positive bright future for the ongoing work of the Black British Theatre Awards. This year we are exceptionally excited to be holding the awards The National Theatre.”
Matthew’s nomination comes as a result of his work on the first new UK production of The Wiz: The Super Soul Musical “Wonderful Wizard of Oz” in 10 years at the The Hope Mill Theatre. With music and lyrics by Charlie Smalls, book by William F. Brown and original orchestrations by Harold Wheeler, The Wiz is a retelling of L. Frank Baum’s classic children’s novel The Wonderful Wizard of Oz.
A number of creatives who worked alongside Matthew on The Wiz also received nominations including producer Ameena Hameed (Best Producer Award), Leah Hill (Best Choreographer or Movement Director Award), Tarik Frimpong (Best Male Actor in a Musical Award) and Cameron Bernard Jones (Best Supporting Male Actor in a Musical Award). The production itself has a total of six nominations, including Best Production Musical Award.