Radical giants for May Day

African American actor, singer and civil rights campaigner Paul Robeson is remembered as company Tayo Aluko & Friends perform Call Mr Robeson
African American actor, singer and civil rights campaigner Paul Robeson is remembered as company Tayo Aluko & Friends perform Call Mr Robeson

Giants of both the US arts and the Civil Rights movement are celebrated at Preston’s Continental pub on May 1 and 2.

First, on May 1, Paul Robeson: The Giant In a Nutshell sees award-winning actor, writer and singer Tayo Aluko perform well-known and more obscure songs of this radical titan, and illustrates with pictures and stories a life of the great man.

Born in 1898, Robeson was an African-American singer who became an international singing star in the theatre and the movies.

He became politically involved in response to the Spanish Civil War, fascism, and social injustices. His advocacy of anti-imperialism, affiliation with communism, and criticism of the US government caused him to be blacklisted during McCarthyism.

Ill health forced him into retirement from his career, but he remained, until his death in 1976, an advocate of the political causes he championed.

Following this, on Friday, Woody Guthrie: The Long Road to Peekskill finds Will Kaufman presenting the story of Guthrie’s personal transformation from a youthful Oklahoma racist to an ardent anti-racist champion.

Tickets for these events are £7 and are available online now from See Tickets, Skiddle & WeGotTickets. Buy tickets in person from The Continental (01772 499 425), Action Records (01772 884 772) and Preston Visitor Information (01772 253 731).