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50 Years of Leeds West Indian Carnival

  • Venue: Quarry Theatre
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More Information on 50 Years of Leeds West Indian Carnival

We mark Leeds West Indian Carnival’s 50th birthday with a major programme of activity celebrating a key moment in the history of our city.


Friday 25 August

The stakes are high for the incredible costumes from across the UK competing to be Leeds Carnival King and Queen 2017. With maximum wow-factor, steel pan harmonies, the stunning Carnival Choir, and much more, this is a golden anniversary must-do.


Monday 11 September

Charting a love story spanning 50 years, from the Caribbean to Leeds, Melody and Cyril tell their story of migration, love, loss and celebration. Carnival Chronicles is embroidered with moments from Leeds West Indian Carnival’s half a century history and the accounts of the pioneers and community that brought Carnival to the city of Leeds.



Saturday 16 September

10 years after the final performance of Geraldine Connor’s inspirational Carnival Messiah, we celebrate the impact it had on the cultural landscape of Leeds.

Join us for this special film screening based on Handel’s Messiah, featuring international artists alongside the people of Leeds.


12 – 15 September

Join us in the Quarry as a company of professional actors and community participants come together to share and celebrate the story of the birth of Leeds West Indian Carnival.

Woven from first hand accounts collected by Colin Grant, curated by Burt Caesar and directed by Associate Director Amy Leach; Queen of Chapeltown follows the stories of those who campaigned, sewed and danced their way to the first carnival in 1967 and of one woman’s journey to become a Carnival Queen.

Queen of Chapeltown is supported by:


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Major funders
Arts Council England Leeds City Council The Liz and Terry Bramall Foundation
Principal Capital Partners
SOYO Moda
Principal Capital and Access Partner
Irwin Mitchell Solicitors