About the show
Inua Ellams’ Barber Shop Chronicles is a cut above at the National Theatre.
What do you tell your hairdresser? Inua Ellams’ Barber Shop Chronicles whisks visitors into the fascinating world of the Barber Shop, an all-male environment where no conversation is off limits. Jumping between Johannesburg, Harrare, Kampala, Lagos and Accra, Ellams’ play shows how African men use these shops as more than just somewhere to get a hot shave.
Barber Shop Chronicles collects together the stories of men that turn these shops into the perfect places for collecting gossip, discussing sport, debating politics and putting the world to rights over a short back and sides.
Bijan Sheibani directs Barber Shop Chronicles. He previously worked at the National Theatre on A Taste Of Honey and Emil And The Detectives.
Fisayo Akinade, previously in Saint Joan at the Donmar Warehouse, leads the cast. Hammed Animashaun, whose credits include Amadeus at the NT, joins him. Cyril Nri, who was previously at the NT in The Observer, also returns for this production. Peter Bankolé, Maynard Eziashi, Simon Manyonda, Patrice Naiambana, Kwami Odoom, Sule Rimi, Abdul Salis and David Webber complete the cast.
Ellams is a spoken word poet and a playwright. He titled his most recent poetry show An Evening With An Immigrant. Barber Shop Chronicles is the third play by the writer to play at the National Theatre. It follows The 14th Tale and Black T-Shirt Collection. After playing in London, the show travels to Leeds for a run at the West Yorkshire Playhouse.
You can find out more about Barber Shop Chronicles in our interview with Inua Ellams.
Barber Shop Chronicles runs at the National Theatre from until 9 January.