Patricia Cumper, MBE
Patricia Cumper is an award-winning playwright, producer, director, arts administrator and cultural leader who's a passionate advocate for the arts, particularly the BAME arts sector and is also an experienced and articulate critic and commentator.
Born in Jamaica, Cumper studied Archaeology and Anthropology at Cambridge University where she was a College Exhibitioner and a full swimming Blue. Returning to Jamaica after graduation, Cumper became an award-winning playwright and producer in Caribbean theatre whose work was performed throughout the Caribbean, in Canada and the US.
After returning to the UK in 1993, Cumper pioneered the UK's largest Black-led theatre company, Talawa Theatre Company, producing ground-breaking work with partners including the West Yorkshire Playhouse, The Victoria and Albert Museum and English Touring Theatre.
The company also launched the careers of young Black British theatre-makers and toured groundbreaking work to South Africa's Grahamstown Festival. Patricia has won awards for her work in radio drama with the BBC, for both original series and adaptations of the work of among others Andrea Levy, Alice Walker, Zora Neale Hurston and Toni Morrison.
Cumper is a Fellow of the Royal Society of the Arts and was awarded an MBE for services to Black British Theatre. Her son and grandsons are the great joys of her life.