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Barber Shop Chronicles Inua Ellams

Barber Shop Chronicles By Inua Ellams

Barber Shop Chronicles by Inua Ellams

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Barber Shop Chronicles Summary

Barber Shop Chronicles by Inua Ellams

Barber Shop Chronicles is a generously funny, heart-warming and insightful new play set in five African cities, Johannesburg, Harare, Kampala, Lagos, Accra, and in London. Inspired in part by the story of a Leeds barber, the play invites the audience into a unique environment where the banter may be barbed, but the truth always telling. The barbers of these tales are sages, role models and father figures who keep the men together and the stories alive. Inua Ellams's celebrated play was first produced by the National Theatre, Fuel and Leeds Playhouse in 2017.

Barber Shop Chronicles Reviews

This is an absolute cracker. Inua Ellams has the simple but ingenious idea of exploring black masculinity through the humble barber's shop... It's funny, fast, laced with music and dance, and performed with irresistible good humour and style... But deep down this is also a thoughtful, serious and moving piece of drama... he writes with zip and a wonderful ear, and the piece is beautifully woven. * Financial Times *
It's a play crammed with questions, discussing African attitudes to parental discipline in one scene, and the role Nigerian Pidgin plays in cultural identity in the next. Idea follows idea: Christianity as a business fattening the wallets of pastors; the western media's depiction of Lagos; the way that words can be used to debase and destroy. Again and again the plays returns to the theme of black masculinity and the different shapes it can take... The tone of the play shifts fluidly from comedy to poignancy to rage... This is all handled with skill and a huge amount of warmth. Barber Shop Chronicles is a pleasure to experience. The level of joy in the room is high... Rich, exhilarating theatre that opens a window into a world of men. * The Stage *
It's always bracing to watch the National open its arms, doors and repertoire to new work, new audiences, new experiences. There's certainly not been anything like this all-male, all-black piece from poet/playwright Inua Ellams, which bounces with brio as it whisks us around a series of African barber shops in six countries on two continents over the space of a single day... it becomes gradually clear that these resolutely female-free spaces are also part confessional, part psychiatrist's chair for both the staff and customers. Hefty topics ripple and re-echo over the thousands of miles that separate the establishments: how to be a father, how to be a son, how to be a man. A joke about a fly in a pint also travels effortlessly. * Evening Standard *

About Inua Ellams

Born in Nigeria, Inua Ellams is a cross-art-form practitioner, a poet, playwright, performer, graphic artist, designer and founder of the Midnight Run-a nocturnal urban excursion. He is a Complete Works poet alumni and a designer at White Space Creative Agency. Inua's previous plays at the National include The 14th Tale (Fringe First award) and Black T-Shirt Collection. Other plays include Knight Watch at Greenwich + Docklands Festival; Cape at the Unicorn; Three Sisters at the National Theatre and The Half God of Rainfall at the Kiln Theatre. Radio plays include The Ballad of Abdul Hafiz and Wild Blood. He has published three five books poetry; Candy Coated Unicorns and Converse All Stars, Thirteen Fairy Negro Tales and The Wire-Headed Heathen, #Afterhours and The Actual.

Additional information

Barber Shop Chronicles by Inua Ellams
Bloomsbury Publishing PLC
Book picture is for illustrative purposes only, actual binding, cover or edition may vary.
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Customer Reviews - Barber Shop Chronicles