BBC Studios TalentWorks and Black Creators Matter, along with the Barbican in London, have announced the four winning creators of In The Mix, whose films will be screened at a red carpet event at the Barbican this evening.
The winners are comedic script writer Adna Ahmed, multidisciplinary artists Rachel Isabel Mukendi and Bunmi Oyateru, actor writer director and producer Kaylen Francis and writer, actor and recording artist Nenda Neururer. (For more about each, see below.)
In The Mix is aimed at developing the talents of emerging black content creators. The winning creators represent a range of disciplines including actors, directors, recording artists and passionate multidisciplinary artists. They were awarded a commission to produce four short films for BBC Reel under the mentorship of experienced producers.
The winning films are:
NAAG NOOL: created in collaboration by Adna Ahmed and Kaylen Francis, this film explores how the term Naag Nool – meaning “alive woman” and used to describe resilient women who can survive in the face of adversity – manifests itself in the lives of Somali women both old and young.
OACHKATZLSCHWOAF: made by writer, actor and recording artist, Nenda Neururer, the film takes the Tyrolean-German signature word and explores the internal conflict she felt growing up as a black mixed-race girl in the Austrian Alps, and later as a Tyrolean German speaker living in London.
HIKIKOMORI: created by director and designer, Bunmi Oyateru, this film looks at the issue of social withdraw in Japan, as a result of cultural expectations, drawing parallels with the experience of the African diaspora. Bunmi explores the need to isolate in order to regenerate.
NALINGI YO created by multidisciplinary artist Rachel Isabel Mukendi who uses collage and poetry with her practice. Her film explores her Congolese heritage and discusses how love translates through the community of black women that surround her and how the language of love is expressed.
As well as four guaranteed commissions, In The Mix also provided a series of sessions for creators at the Barbican. The sessions provided insights from industry experts, including BBC Sounds PRESSED producer Pilar Nalwimba, BBC Audio Lab commissioner Leanne Alie, BBC Studios ScriptWorks Development Producer Suzy Cripps and BBC Studios Executive Producer James Van Der Pool helping to further their skills and provide development opportunities.
Katrina Bell, development producer at BBC Studios TalentWorks said: “In The Mix has been a fantastic opportunity to seek out and develop new creative talent and to see their ideas come to life. BBC Studios TalentWorks has been delighted to work with Black Creators Matter, the Barbican and BBC Reel and we can’t wait to see the films on the big screen this evening.”
Audrey Solvar, founder of Black Creators Matter said: “In the Mix is a revolutionary programme! Not only did we support black talent, but we also gave them learning opportunities and created jobs for the community. This new ecosystem has proven to work perfectly, and I am glad that it was created alongside BBC Studios TalentWorks.”
Will Gompertz, Barbican artistic director, said: “In The Mix is an inspirational programme and it’s been a joy to participate in with such a talented group of creators and partner organisations. The films that have been produced are truly unique, and I’m delighted that we are able to host the premiere to present their work.”
Daniel John, deputy editor from BBC Reel said: “BBC Reel’s mission is to help you ‘look beyond your world’, and we believe the only way to do that is to search out new voices telling the stories that are simply not being told. In The Mix has been such a fantastic opportunity to do this, and it has been a real privilege to develop these films with such talented and passionate storytellers.”
More information about the In The Mix finalists:
25-year-old creator and comedic script writer with a passion for telling underrepresented stories and helping make the creative industry more inclusive. Currently working as Programme Manager for a charity that focuses on mentoring and training. Co-founder of writing and development incubator for Black women called ‘Babes in Development’ who aspire to write and produce stories. They hold regular workshops and writing sessions.
Kaylen (24) is an Actor, Writer, Director & Producer. In 2021, Kaylen Produced, Directed and starred in his debut short film ‘Family Matters’ which was nominated for ‘London Lift Off film festival’. He also directed, wrote, and starred in ‘The Healer’ (2022) a short funded by John Boyega and Converse and screened at the Create Next event at the Curzon Soho cinema. In addition to this, he has also co-directed a short film titled “27” that Netflix funded. In 2022, Kaylen was featured in Trippin magazine regarding “New Generation of Youth in South London”. His ultimate objective is to create bodies of work that profoundly impact lives and leave a long-lasting impression on individuals who see them.
Nenda (28) is a writer, actor & recording artist who grew up in the Austrian Alps. She moved to London at 19 to go to drama school and has since acted in TV, film and theatre productions across the UK. Her most recent credit is one of the leading roles in Sky’s supernatural thriller The Rising. Nenda has won awards for her music videos & her songs have over 1 million streams on Spotify. She is a screenwriter mainly focusing on comedy-dramas and comedies. In her work she likes to talk about identity, socio-political issues and unlikely friendships.
BUNMI (24) is a multidisciplinary artist that has a passion for all things creation. A natural storyteller, he believes the best form of communication is a good story. With experience in direction, production and design he is multifaceted to create his narrative with a number of tools.”. Creative director of, Slug – which aims to meld filmmaking and design. The essence of Slug is rooted in the belief of the social significance of art and design. Relating to my own background, stories are often told in relation to the African diaspora experience. Dealing largely with the incorporeal stipulations of choosing preservation of self against often erosive traditional norms – Slug praises all routes to the same place.
Rachel Isabel Mukendi
Rachel (33) is a multidisciplinary artist who used collage and poetry. Her film explores her Congolese heritage. Her practice explores the autonomy of black womanhood and the black experience. Her work is informed by her identity and examines her relationship with the Black female body, politics, and nature.
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