Rev Kingsley Tweed To Speak On Theatre Boycott

November 21, 2022

[Written by Dale Butler]

On Saturday, December 10th at 7 p.m. at St. Paul A.M.E. Church’s Centennial Hall, the legendary Rev. Dr. Kingsley Tweed will share his memories of the famous 1959 Theatre Boycott organized by the secretive “Progressive Group.”

Exiled for over 41 years, historians would often mention his name, but were unaware of how to contact him. It wasn’t until the late filmmaker Errol Williams had blessed Bermuda with his award-winning documentary film, “When Voices Rise”, featuring Rev. Dr. Kingsley Tweed, the “Progressive Group” and others who preceded them that the avenue of communication was established.

Dr. Kingsley Tweed Bermuda November 20, 2022

The night will provide an opportunity for him to entertain questions, which is a good thing, so that the audience can broaden their knowledge.

Produced by Atlantic Publishing House, with Director Rotimi Martins, the audience will also have an opportunity to enjoy singer Toni Robinson [pictured] and poetry by June Caisey [pictured], along with Bermuda’s musicians Keith Lee and Miles Manders [pictured].

The audience will get to participate. So, it’s an event not to be missed. Mrs. Peggy Burns will be selling “The History of the Bermuda Industrial Union” written by the late Ira Philip. The book contains a significant section on Rev. Tweed.

Rev. Dr. Kingsley Tweed served as the general secretary of the BIU for a few years and was known as an outstanding pianist. He’s excited about returning to the country of his birth to share his stories, and he will also grace the audience with piano selections.

It is rare that we get to hear personal narratives from our legends. Mention the 1959 Theatre Boycott – responsible for the integration of Bermuda’s theatres, in the first instance, followed by hotels, restaurants, our schools and other places, and inevitably you will hear the name of its principal organizers – the “Progressive Group” and the boycott’s protagonists – Rev. Dr. Kingsley Tweed and the late Comrade Richard Lynch.

Tickets for the event are: General Admission – $25; Patrons – $50 Singles and $75 Couples. Cash sales only are available at The Music Box, Hamilton [Tuesdays to Saturdays, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.]; Caesar’s Pharmacy, Somerset; Robertson’s Drug Store, St. George’s and St. Paul A.M.E. Church, Hamilton.

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Comments (13)

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  1. Not taking the knee says:

    Heard it all before

  2. Gerv says:

    Woooooh, hang on. Is this about Kingsley Tweed, who had an important part to play but then elected to live overseas for the subsequent 50 years. Legendary?
    Or his ‘son’ Rev Tweed, who is not related to Kingsley?
    Just asking, enlighten me.

    • Gene Harvey says:

      Woooooh, yes hang on Gerv whoever you are, since you seek enlightenment. This is the same fearless Kingsley Tweed who as the bane of their existence faced down the rabid and racist ‘forty thieves’ who thirsted for his blood. Fortunately, the indomitable Reverend Doctor had the presence of mind to flee before he was martyred and left on display to dissuade other Black warriors from daring to resist and confront their oppressors. Would you have been as brave? If not ‘exiled’ what word would you use for that circumstance?

      • Turthhertz says:

        How many members of the Progressive Group or individuals who took place in the boycott were killed for doing so?

      • Well said says:

        Yes. You told it like it is.

    • Stupid comment says:

      It os Kingsley not Nicholas. What a dumb comment you have made because your contribution to Bermuda has been limited to yourself. His life was threatened so he left. Come and hear the story and you may ne forgiven for your ignorance. You sound like the Bermudians who criticized the Bermuda Anti Apartheid movement but was first in line when they released Mandella.

      • saud says:

        I’m glad you qualified the rest of your post in the subject line. Thank you.

  3. puzzled says:

    Tweed looking for another handout.

  4. Hey says:

    A great documentary. Although Kingsley Tweed wasn’t exiled. He chose to leave Bermuda and not to come back for 41 years. Am not sure exiled is the right word for that.

    • Toodle-oo says:

      Ask any honest member of his immediate ‘local family’ and they’ll tell you what all this cockamanie stuff about death threats really is.
      Funny how as a very minor player in the theatre boycott movement he was the only one to get these so called threats.

      • You are still says:

        So totally misinformed. Tell the truth. When yiu arrived you Sauid the movement would fail because the Progressive Group were a secret fearing severe repercussions.Kingsley and others took the risk . Guess you wanted him to stay and suffer as a consequence while you benefitted. We need to tell your story.

    • Guess we have to says:

      Attend and find out.

  5. Honestly you lot…get your facts straight the original boycott was at Somers playhouse Duke of York st.St.Georges January 22nd 1959…Lucille Foggo and Joan Jenny Smith sat in the third row left cause in the front they could drag you away third row you had to grab (you grab a person that far in then all bet are off)…they came said move they said no…they said we will remove you…the theater which quietly filled behind then on the sides then two rows in front of stood up as they did Point made let’s go…a voice from a man in the back row who past several to be one of the first out said loudly and we want our money back they said your money back? We said yes,,,we didn’t see a flimsy (film), we want our money back…so they gave it back….being a racist can cost you money just cannot believe how good an idea that was! Now these two women had threats for a good while…but the two women stayed…they didn’t flee. One more thing…they was fear…but when progressive went up Aunt peggys’ the deed was done they came up after to take it over as they were more organised…didn’t bother anyone till you said they were afraid and you bravely took it over after they asked you that gets my goatand you left and went somewhere? Ok..we all do our own me …that was you…cuil. But they weren’t afraid that day…cautious but they were tole separate at a cafe bout a mont earlier…well …that got their goat…they were hungry and justwanted a plate of food and a drink of some kind….