Talawa was founded in 1986 by Yvonne Brewster, Carmen Munroe, Mona Hammond and Inigo Espejel, in response to the lack of creative opportunities for Black actors and the marginalisation of Black peoples from cultural processes.
Today, Talawa is the primary Black theatre company in the UK, with more than 40 award-winning touring productions from African classics to Oscar Wilde behind it.
The Company has performed work by writers like C.L.R. James, Derek Walcott, Michael Abbensetts, Wole Soyinka, Patricia Cumper, Mustapha Matura, Roy Williams, Derek Walcott, Jackie Kay, Kwami Kwei-Armah, Trish Cooke, Malorie Blackman, Michael Bhim and Theresa Ikoko.
A number of Britain's finest actors, many of whom have sustained successful careers in film, radio, theatre and television, have worked with Talawa including Norman Beaton, Cathy Tyson, Don Warrington, Carmen Munroe, Doña Croll, Danny John-Jules, Sharon D Clarke, Kobna Holdbrook-Smith, Michaela Coel, Nonso Anozie and Mona Hammond.
Talawa writers, directors and personnel now work in all areas of British theatre.
These achievements demonstrate the Company's continually growing status, influence and contribution to contemporary British theatre and the cultural life of the UK.