The Endz: a story of friendship, love, violence, and reconciliation in the heart of the city

The Endz is a collaboration between local secondary schools, Harris Academy Peckham, Charter School East Dulwich, Harris Academy Girl's East Dulwich and The Multi-Story Orchestra, who have been bringing professional musicians and young people together to create extraordinary performances since 2011.

Following the stabbing and consequent death of Malcolm Mide-Madariola in 2018, pupils at Harris Academy Peckham decided to create a show to honor the memory of a close friend. The Endz is this labour of love; a whole community moved by death and determined to put an end to stories like his.

The Multi-Story Orchestra, The Endz (2022), © Bold Tendencies. Photography by Ambra Vernuccio 

For all audience members, this show is a hurricane of talent. The ensemble brags proficiency in spoken word, rap, and singing, as well as an outstanding orchestra that transports listeners to another world.

The Multi-Story Orchestra, The Endz (2022), © Bold Tendencies. Photography by Ambra Vernuccio 

Since the show’s creation, it has been hosted by co-producer Bold Tendencies, a not-for-profit art organisation based on the top four floors of Peckham’s Multi-Storey Car Park. The site has an expansive rooftop exhibition space and an enclosed performance area grounded in 42,000 sq ft of gray brutalist cement. This unforgiving landscape aligns so well with the punchy rap and emotional prose about the harshness of urban living, longing, and loyalty to the streets. 

Bold Tendencies, Love (2022) © Bold Tendencies. Photography by Deniz Guzel 

Bold Tendencies Covered Levels (2022) © Bold Tendencies. Photography by Oskar Proctor 

As the show began, a panoramic view of London trickled into the performance space. One of the most beautiful things about the concrete is the way it rumbles, not only with the sound of music but the surrounding voice of the city. The tracks of Peckham Rye could be heard in conversation with passing trains as Rhys, the main character of the show, opened The Endz in poetry and prose.

The story that followed was captivating. The Endz seem to flow through the blood of the performance in undulating South London slang, inside jokes about plantain and a house party scene that transformed the stage into a heartbeat, pumping loudly as around 100 school children (the choir and the main actors of the show) jumped to a rap beat in sync. There were some blow-away performances, with whistle tones that would bring you to tears and flawless portrayals of pain that remind the audience how close to home Malcolm’s story is to these young South London identities.

The show is definitely not one to be missed: it’s a unique combination of cinematic, deeply moving, and slightly disturbing, as comments from Malcolm’s family end the show, a reminder that The Endz is just one small part of a longer, and perhaps more difficult conversation on eradicating knife violence in the UK’s capital.

The Multi-Story Orchestra, The Endz (2022), © Bold Tendencies. Photography by Ambra Vernuccio 

Written by Akhera Williams