An evening of song, poetry, story, laughter and some tears. The 23 minute documentary film, written and directed by Stephen Linstead won UK Best Film at the Research in Film Awards 2018 awards at BAFTA, and 82 other international awards/selections including the Hollywood International Independent Documentary Awards. It has now been acquired by the BFI for its Film Forever archive, and has been shown on broadcast TV more than 30 times. It tells the story England’s long-forgotten worst mining disaster when 361 miners and rescuers were killed in explosions at the Oaks Colliery, Barnsley in 1866 and the emotional struggle against the odds by local people to raise a memorial 150 years later. Black Snow is the choking black dust which rained down from the heavens after the blasts. Jed Grimes (twice BBC Radio 2 Folk Award Nominee) composed and arranged the music, with Mercury Music Prize winning producer Rob File (Badly Drawn Boy). The music in its own right won an award for excellence at the Southern Shorts Awards, Atlanta, Georgia Film Festival, and in the Roadshow this is expanded into a full concert set with Steve adding vocals, and both Jed and Steve contributing original material and new arrangements of traditional pieces.. Visually compelling with atmospheric cinematography, using virtual reality footage to recreate the disaster, the film builds to a moving, inspirational and spiritual climax. The 90-minute multimedia roadshow sets this poignantly in context through songs, poems, stories and original visuals. The film has featured on Together TV, BBC Look North and in The Times, and had a double page centre spread in the Daily Mirror. The Roadshow has played several independent cinemas and arts festivals including Ripon International Festival and the Edinburgh Fringe.
“A moving documentary. A dramatic reconstruction from real-life accounts …. [a] brilliant evocation of a lost way of life – and the lives lost in it” – Paul Routledge Daily Mirror
“An award-winning documentary, gaining plaudits from across the globe for a story that focuses on a small section of Yorkshire” – Living North
“The sort of show for which the Fringe exists. Informative, provocative… and entertaining. A must-see show indeed”– Edinburgh Festival Fringe
“A terrific multi-media joined-up local history community project about really significant events … a canny piece of work” Jerry Simon, Stirrings Magazine
Broadstairs International Folk Week was very pleased to feature the Black Snow Roadshow in 2019. The film is extremely moving and involving, with seamless links between historical facts and the lasting impact of the disaster on the community. It is of high quality and deserves to be shown on national TV. Wrapped around the film is the specially written score which has heartfelt lyrics and beautiful tunes; Jed Grimes and Steve Linstead do the whole story justice and honour the memory of those involved. We had to turn people away from the venue – we should have shown it twice! Jo Tuffs Festival Director