Theatre is tackling a constant diversity issue, a key component being how to attract an audience that rarely feels the theatre is open to them. Barber Shop Chronicles is the kind of work that should open some doors.
Barber Shop Chronicles is a bold and inexorable march towards changing the way we share stories, shifting the mainstream narrative and dealing with both joy and pain in equal measure.
Barber Shop Chronicles is a celebration of friendship, tradition and heritage. Ellams skilfully toes the line between sentiment, gaucheness, sincerity and wit while exploring issues of racial, social and gender identity with a keen eye for human foibles.
Barber Shop Chronicles is a hugely impressive production. Life-affirming and vivid. Putting lives on stage which have not been seen there before.
Gershwyn Eustache Jnr, Leah Harvey and Aisling Loftus lead the cast of Small Island, adapted by Helen Edmundson from Andrea Levy’s prize-winning novel, directed by Rufus Norris in the Olivier Theatre, as part of the National Theatre’s new season.
Well, we made it, just. 2017 passed by with just the 346 visits to the theatre, I don’t really know why I do it to myself! Out of those, 33 were return visits to shows I’d already seen and I got out of London for 32 shows – not too bad considering I don’t do Edinburgh and no one is covering my travel expenses!
It is a rare occurrence indeed to see an audience as happy, as involved, and as diverse as the one that sat with me to watch Barber Shop Chronicles at the NT. What a glorious show. Such dynamism, energy, and an array of fantastic performances.
Random and topical thoughts and quotes gathered by My Theatre Mates contributor Aleks Sierz, first published on www.sierz.co.uk.
The National Theatre’s June 2017 – January 2018 season is live: Network, with Bryan Cranston; John Tiffany directs Pinocchio; Tony Award-winning play Oslo opens in the Lyttelton; Barber Shop Chronicles returns to the Dorfman.
Black theatre used to be one of most creative aspects of contemporary British drama. But recently a lot of the impetus behind plays by black playwrights seems to have dried up. The great names of the past couple of decades are either silent, or, which is worse, merely repeating themselves.
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