Maya Angelou was one of the world's most important writers and activists.
This special evening of readings from her autobiographies, gospel and music is chaired by Jon Snow and Moira Stuart and directed by Paulette Randall, featuring contributions by Adjoa Andoh, Angel Coulby, Chiwetel Ejiofor, Nicola Hughes, Ella Odedina, Clarke Peters, NITROvox, Roderick Williams and Ayanna Witter-Johnson.
Maya Angelou lived and chronicled an extraordinary life. Rising from poverty, violence and racism, she became a renowned author, poet, playwright, civil rights' activist – working with Malcolm X and Martin Luther King – and memoirist.
She wrote and performed a poem, 'On the Pulse of Morning', for President Clinton on his inauguration; she was given the Presidential Medal of Freedom by President Obama and was honoured by more than 70 universities throughout the world.
She wrote seven volumes of autobiography beginning with the extraordinary I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings, which told of her childhood in 1930s Stamps, Arkansas, the segregated southern US town where her grandmother ran the general store; and of the trauma of rape and the healing power of literature and love.
Maya Angelou was an indomitable force, famed for her spirit and style, courage and laughter. She died on 28 May aged 86.
'You may shoot me with your words,
You may cut me with your eyes,
You may kill me with your hatefulness
But still, like air, I'll rise.'
Join us as we pay tribute to one of the world's most important writers and activists.
This performance will be British Sign Language interpreted. Suitable seats have been reserved for customers wishing to use this service. To access these seats, please email firstname.lastname@example.org rather than booking through the website.