Controversial film about British Black Power revolutionary Michael X coming to Leeds for rare screening

Black Audio Film Collective’s 1991 film Who Needs A Heart will be shown at Leeds City Varieties Music Hall in October 2022. 

The controversial film made by the groundbreaking experimental art group addresses the ‘loves, passions, influences, shortcomings and failures’ of Michael X, the British Black Power revolutionary.  

For Black History Month 2022, the rarely-seen film will be shown at a special screening at City Varieties Music Hall, Leeds, on Monday 24 October, thanks to collaboration between Pavilion, City Varieties and the School of History’s Dhanveer Singh Brar, a lecturer in Black British history.

The screening, at 6.30pm, will be followed by a discussion between Dhanveer, Edward George – the writer of Who Needs A Heart and a founding member of the Black Audio Film Collective – and Cassie McFarlane, who plays Millie in the film.  

An existential, expressionist journey into Black radicalism

The film combines fictional dramatisation with documentary, rejecting the conventions of both to replace the spoken word with a ‘cacophonous playlist’ of black music featuring Rahsaan Roland Kirk, Howlin’ Wolf, James Brown, Ella Fitzgerald and more. 

The Black Audio Film Collective takes the viewer on an existential, expressionist journey into the fledgling moments of Black radicalism in late twentieth century Britain.  

How to book tickets

Tickets for the event are priced on a ‘pay as you feel’ basis, including a pay nothing option, but pre-booking is essential.  

For more information and to book tickets, visit the Pavilion website

The film is presented in partnership with the Hyde Park Picture House and the University of Leeds’ School of History. 

Main image: Who Needs A Heart, Black Audio Film Collective, 1991