Bonnie Greer

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Bonnie Greer, OBE, studied theatre in Chicago under David Mamet, in New York City at the Actors Studio with Elia Kazan, and at the Negro Ensemble Company under the West Indian-American playwright Steve Carter.

Greer has lived in the UK since 1986 and became a citizen in 1997. She holds dual nationality.

Her plays, books and novels are concerned with the lives of minorities within majority cultures, particularly those of women. She has been Arts Council playwright in residence at the Soho Theatre, and at the Black Theatre Co-operative. She was awarded the Verity Bargate Award for Best Play by the Soho Theatre Company, and shortlisted for an Arts Council award for Best Play. She has had over a dozen plays produced over BBC Radio; one short film for BBC 2, and co-produced and wrote and presented the documentary on Black art in the West: Reflecting Skin, (2004) for the BBC. She has played Joan of Arc at the Theatre Atelier in Paris; wrote and performed her improvisational oratorio “Greco/Davis” for the 2009 London Jazz Festival alongside the Black British jazz artists, Cleveland Watkiss and Julian Joseph. Her play Marilyn and Ella, about the real life friendship of Marilyn Monroe and Ella Fitzgerald had a brief run at the Apollo Theatre, West End in 2009 .

Bonnie was one of three excellent Chairs that I had over 10 years at writernet (along with Gabriel Gbadamosi and Paul Sirett). Bonnie was an important part of the Acts of Translation project which helped create the Francophone strand of the fence. After writernet I supported Bonnie towards setting up projects and programmes with a London-Paris axis under the umbrella of Clin d”oeil, with an initial base at Somerset House. Bonnie ran a very engaging 2-day symposium with the Franco-British Council on Diversity 2.0 in which we explored some of the issues which differ between our own UK perspectives on cultural diversity and French laisite. Bonnie has a wonderful generosity of spirit as well as a fast-moving and multi-lateral intelligence. She’s also a lot of fun.

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