Theater: Barbershop Chronicles – West End

Opened: July 24, 2019

Book by: Inua Ellams

West End Cast: Fisayo Akinade, Hammed Animashaun, Peter Bankole, Maynard Eziashi, Simon Manyonda, Patrice Naiambana, Cyril Nri, Kwami Odoom, Sule Rimi, Abdul Salis, David Webber & Anthony Welsh

Expertly staged in the round, Barber Shop Chronicles makes you feel like a fly on the wall witnessing the sacred conversations that men have.

Over the course of a day in Peckham, Johannesburg, Harare, Kampala, Lagos and Accra, men gather into barber shops to talk about life, family, love, sexuality, politics and more.

Inua Ellams makes every conversation like it could be happening anywhere, while at the same time being very rooted in the city it’s set in. The male characters aren’t afraid to laugh, yell, cheer and cry in front of each other.

With an ensemble cast, the performances are strong. Most actors play multiple roles and fully embody each character. Their accents are strong, which makes you listen carefully, but when you understand their hearts, it’s a transporting journey.

Final say: An entire journey in a day. ★★★★☆

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