Watch: National Theatre at Home – Barber Shop Chronicles

  • The List
  • 12 May 2020
Watch: National Theatre at Home – Barber Shop Chronicles

The London theatre's new at home programme continues with Inua Ellams' acclaimed 2017 play

The National Theatre at Home series continues this week with the broadcast of Inua Ellams' acclaimed 2017 play Barber Shop Chronicles, which has had two sell-out runs at the National Theatre, a world tour, and a hugely successful summer residency at London's Roundhouse. This heart-warming and sharp new play tells multiple stories of love, loss and family as the action leaps from a barber shop in Peckham to Johannesburg, Harare, Kampala, Lagos and Accra over the course of a single day.

When the production toured to Edinburgh's Lyceum in 2019, we described it as 'joyous and celebratory' in our four star review: 'Inua Ellams' script for Barber Shop Chronicles doesn't simply represent multiple male voices from the African diaspora – it challenges conventional dramatic structure to depict a shifting kaleidoscope of personalities and positions, gliding from a tense day in London across to vignettes in barbershops in Accra, Johannesburg and more. By turns thoughtful, cutting and direct, the script draws on verbatim conversations to cover reflections on male identity, the relationship between fathers and sons, the complications caused by colonial oppression and the importance of supporting Chelsea.'

Directed by Olivier award-winning director Bijan Sheibani, the footage was recorded by the National Theatre in January 2018 and features the original cast.

Watch Barber Shop Chronicles from 7pm on Thursday 14 May for one week.

With theatres around the UK and beyond remaining closed as lockdown continues, companies and venues are doing their bit to keep audiences at home connected and entertained as best as possible. London's National Theatre announced their National Theatre at Home programme last month, giving audiences the weekly opportunity to enjoy world-class theatre while the venue is closed. And with huge numbers tuning in every week, the initiative has been a great success. So far, we've been treated to streams of One Man, Two Guvnors starring James Cordon, Jane Eyre, Treasure Island, Twelfth Night, Frankenstein starring Jonny Lee Miller and Benedict Cumberbatch, and most recently, Antony & Cleopatra, starring Ralph Fiennes and Sophie Okonedo.

Keep up with the National Theatre's weekly streams on their YouTube channel.

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National Theatre at Home

The National Theatre entertains us during lockdown by streaming a different one of their shows each week.