Presenters Lenny Henry and Suzy Klein

In the conventional history of classical music, black composers and musicians are a neglected voice. They have mostly been regarded as occasional curious figures on the edge of the repertoire, their music rarely performed and poorly understood.

But the truth is people of colour have always composed and performed, played pivotal roles in their own times, and even helped shape and shift the course of musical history.


In this documentary, Lenny Henry and Suzy Klein explore the lives and works of some of these remarkable men and women, people who achieved greatness despite the many hurdles that were placed in their way because of their race, and whose stories and compositions deserve a much wider audience.

In bringing these neglected biographies to light, Lenny and Suzy will also open a window onto the societies and historical eras they lived in. And investigate how the classical music world became 'white- washed' of diversity by musicologists and historians, whether by intent or oversight.
This is the real Hidden History of Classical Music.

Presenters Lenny Henry and Suzy Klein 
Director Guy Evans
Exec Producer Angela Ferreira 

Douglas Road Productions
BBC TV 90 mins 2020