The Barbershop Chronicles (2009) - Rotten Tomatoes The Tomatometer rating – based on the published opinions of hundreds of film and television critics – is a trusted measurement of movie and TV ...
What do audiences think of Barber Shop Chronicles our new play by Inua Ellams Barber Shop Chronicles is a coproduction with Fuel and West Yorkshire
Get movie: The Barbershop Chronicles
A show of sadness and great joy - Barber Shop Chronicles ... A show of sadness and great joy - Barber Shop Chronicles, National Theatre, review
A show of sadness and great joy To walk into the auditorium before the start of Inua Ellams’s new play is to walk into a space teeming with life The Barbershop Chronicles We’re in a barbershop full of African men chatting cutting hair joshing with the audience and chilling to music A Champions League final between Chelsea and Barcelona is on the TV the late American rapper Tupac is on the stereo It’s instantly compulsively convivial Inua Ellams has always explored ideas of masculinity and migration through his plays and slam poetry performances Here he pushes those themes onto a global stage in this new piece which braids together various conversations in six different barbershops from London to Lagos to Johannesburg across the course of a single day The barbershop has a similar function to a pub a place to chat argue pass the time be a man Here under the muscular flair of director Bijan Sheibani it also becomes a setting for street theatre populated by poseurs heroes thieves thinkers and lovers A place where like a new hair cut many of these men try on different ideas of African masculinity for size Ellams has an instinctive feel for the polyphonous rhythms of dialogue and the way his characters use language is both a texture and a theme of this play which threads in debates on Nigerian Pidgin and the use of the N word with casual ease He skilfully maintains control of his sprawling cast although only slowly do individual relationships become distinct and characters gain depth and pathos In London young Samuel Fisayo Akinade harbours a seething grudge against his father’s friend Emmanuel who has taken over his barbershop while Samuel’s father is in prison In Johannesburg Simphiwe Patrice Naiambana drowns his rage against the stillfestering inequalities of apartheid and his estranged father in beer The legacy of slavery hums in the air but so does the theme of absent fathers underpinning the complicated relationship exists between many of these men and their homelands The Barbershop Chronicles If errant fathers have let these sons down Ellams suggests then from Mugabe to Mandela so have their leaders Ellams can’t always prevent these conversations from feeling a wee bit forced – there is a slight strain of say “and now we are going to discuss the cultural significance of Fela Kuti” in the air But such shortcomings are more than compensated for the sinewy pulse and lissom beauty of Sheibani’s production which throbs with energy and heat A hypnotic use of song signifies each shift in location while his crack cast move with limber grace This is a show full of sadness and great joy Barber Shop Chronicles is playing at the Dorfman National Theatre July 8 then at the West Yorkshire Playhouse from July 1229 Book your tickets now to avoid disappointment at tickets telegraph co uk or by calling 0844 871 2118