Vernon Shabaka Thompson

Our meeting point was the Central School of Speech and Drama 1988, when I joined the Acting course. Shabaka was in the year above me but he was from Trinidad and I was from Antigua so we just had to make friends! And that was it! We stuck together, David Carr and Indra Ove…me. There were very few of us with a Caribbean heritage there…I found comfort and felt supported just knowing Shabaka was in the school…and after Drama School? Well, we just kept that friendship going. Shabaka always invited me to his Cultural events at Yaa Asantewaa and The Tabernacle. We went to see play after play after play… and music, especially Carnival music was in almost every interaction.

And of course I met Angela and Oba. And Mum and sister…I was at those BBQs and parties over many summers..

Shabaka was there for me when my sister became ill with terminal cancer…and then he lost his sister too….

It is still such a shock that Shabaka has passed… I was expecting to see him this summer in London. I was in Antigua and he in Trinidad but we were both heading to London….

You’ve been my friend since 1988…. 

May you rest in light and peace.

Much love and blessings…






Julie Hewlett

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