Ekua Bayunu

Chair of the Sustained Theatre National Artists Team and Vice Chair of STUN Creative Producer, Writer, Theatre Director Over the last 30 years, Ekua Bayunu has been quietly accumulating a wealth of experience and skills in arts management, theatre and Particpation

Ekua Bayunu

Ekua Bayunu

When and where are you happiest?
When I work with people with ideas and ambition, when the excitement of “this can really happen” is a tangible sensation in the room

What is your greatest ambition?
On one hand would like to go back to a building, I like making a venue come to life. On the other, working across the UK as a freelance Creative Producer is really inspiring me. I definitely have a story or two trying to weave their way out of me on to a stage or into a book or across a wide screen…

What is your greatest fear?
Kidding myself. Honesty is something I treasure. Taking time to get the facts straight, not jumping to quickly to conclusions. Yet I have to be instinctive and responsive and fast-thinking. I fear not getting the balance right

What inspires you?
Degas’ Little Dancer, The Posse’s Pinchy Kobi & the Seven Duppies, Alexandra Burke’s live rendition of Hallelujah at the X Factor finals…

What has been or is the biggest challenge you’ve faced, pursuing a career in the Arts?
Wondering why we stick to a system of governance that can be so flawed, looking for alternatives or how best to make this one work, that’s a challenge we all face

What do you wish you’d known when you were younger, that you know now?
There’s things I’ve still not got a handle on. That falling in love is still an unexpected pleasure even when you’re ancient!

Ekua Bayunu

What has been your proudest moment?
The last show I produced at Contact, I put together an amazing team for Contact Young Actors Company, they’re all still very early in their careers, but I expect you’ll get to know them soon enough. There was Avaes Mohammad, the writer, Baba Israel, director, Arun Ghosh, musical director, Jaheda Choudhury , Project Manager. The show was called Blog and I loved it. I read this (originally written around 2006) and it makes me smile. I was right about all these amazing artists and I’ve found links to prove it!

Do you think British theatre is in a state of crisis?
No. I think some of the people currently in positions of power and with the money get stuff very wrong and are scared of change, scared of people who didn’t go to the same schools, or eat the same food or listen to same music. But I trust that there are people everywhere who will keep on making great theatre. Of course it would help if they could also eat and pay the rent!

What do you hope for Sustained Theatre to achieve?
That it works to be inclusive. That’s it doesn’t let the same old voices dominate. That it allows difficult conversations to happen. For example, there is that strand of black middleclass theatremakers that just want the same privilege for themselves that the white middle classes enjoy and hate to discuss class difference. I want it to share our confidence to allow difficult conversations to happen that challenge internal as well as external barriers