Born: Clarendon, Jamaica, 1937
Born in Jamaica, Alfred Fagon moved to England in 1955 where he worked for British Rail in Nottingham. After various jobs as a boxer and Calypso singer, Fagon settled down in Bristol to concentrate on writing and acting. Fagon’s first stage appearance was at the Bristol Arts Centre in Henry Livings’ play The Little Mrs Foster Show and in 1970 he starred in Mustapha Matura’s play Black Pieces at the Institute of Contemporary Arts in London. Fagon went on to write and produce plays such as 11 Josephine House, Death of a Blackman, and Four Hundred Pounds among others.
In August 1986 Fagon suffered a fatal heart attack while jogging near his home. The police claimed that they could not find any contacts for him and as a result he was given a pauper’s funeral. When he did not turn up for a meeting at the BBC they contacted his agent Harriet Cruickshank who eventually discovered what had happened to him. Alfred Fagon’s friends and family decided to set up an award in his name, to celebrate and recognise writers of Caribbean and African descent. The Alfred Fagon Award was set up in 1997 and is supported by The Peggy Ramsay Foundation, The Royal Court Theatre and Talawa Theatre Company.
Fagon Plays: 11 Josephine House; Death of a Blackman; Lonely Cowboy
Publisher: Oberon Modern Playwrights
That Black Theatre Podcast
Listen to hosts Nadine and Nadia discuss the theatre of the 1970s, including the works of Alfred Fagon.