Jamal Gerald is an artist based in Leeds. His work is conversational, socially conscious, a celebration of individuality and focuses on identity and lived experiences. Mostly making the type of work that he wants to see, with the aim of taking up space as a Black queer person. Trying to make sure that each piece he creates is a different form to the one he made before. He has made work for poetry slams, films, parties, cafes and theatres.
Jamal started off his career with Leeds Young Authors (LYA), a creative writing and performance group. With LYA, he has competed in poetry slam competitions nationally and in the USA, one poetry slam being Brave New Voices in San Francisco.
He has made work in many different forms, such as a solo show where he shares autobiographical stories about being Black and gay, to having one-to-one conversations about privilege, to stripping down to his underwear in the city centre of Leeds in a short film, an interactive performance where he puts words in people’s mouths, to honouring and invoking the energies of the Orishas through African disaporic rituals.
In 2016, he nationally toured his first solo show FADoubleGOT. He was also a co-deviser and performer for the critically acclaimed Putting Words in Your Mouth, which premiered at the Roundhouse in November 2016; which was devised and directed by Scottee.
In 2018, he was awarded Arts Council England’s Artists’ International Development Fund to do research in Trinidad and Tobago.
He was commissioned by Transform and
Theatre in the Mill, to make a new show called Idol which premiered at Transform 19 in Leeds. Jamal’s work has also been shown at Kampnagel (Hamburg), SPILL Festival of Performance, Leeds Playhouse, Battersea Arts Centre and the Barbican.