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Barber Shop Chronicles


Barber Shop Chronicles
A Fuel, National Theatre and West Yorkshire
Playhouse co-production
Written by Inua Ellams

African men find community—and grooming—across two continents in this life-affirming blockbuster from the UK’s top theater.

The Moore Theater




“Joyous. Brilliantly acted. Life-affirming. Go.” The Independent

Zipping between Johannesburg, Harare, Kampala, Lagos, Accra and London, this flamboyant musical feast by the UK’s preeminent theater company captures the heart and soul of the barber shop as a place for men of Africa and the African diaspora to gather and talk—with some hair-trimming on the side. With a punchy, truth-telling script by Nigerian-born poet/playwright Inua Ellams, barbers and their customers joke, squabble, tell tall tales and (of course) discuss soccer—all the while raising profound issues of migration, race, masculinity and fatherhood. The 12 bustling actors use bursts of song, chant and movement to engineer transitions from one country and character to another.

Contains adult language and a moment of partial nudity.


Funded in part by the Wetzel Family Fund for the Arts.

Co-commissioned by Fuel and the National Theatre. Development funded by Arts Council England with the support of Fuel, National Theatre, West Yorkshire Playhouse, The Binks Trust, British Council ZA, Òran Mór and A Play, a Pie and a Pint. This event was made possible by support from the British Council.