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Barber Shop Chronicles

  • Venue: Other Space
  • Duration: 1 hour and 45 minutes (no interval)
  • Age Guidance: 12+
  • Other: Watch live from your home on National Theatre Live.
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More Information on Barber Shop Chronicles

National Theatre at home

One day. Six cities. A thousand stories.

Following two sell-out runs at the National Theatre, a world tour, and a hugely successful return to Leeds Playhouse in our re-opening season, Inua Ellams’ acclaimed Barber Shop Chronicles is now available to watch through National Theatre at Home for one week only from the 14 May.

Newsroom, political platform, local hotspot, confession box, preacher-pulpit and football stadium. For generations, African men have gathered in barber shops to discuss the world. These are places where the banter can be barbed and the truth is always telling.

Directed by Olivier award-winning director Bijan Sheibani, Barber Shop Chronicles is a heart-warming, hilarious and insightful new play that leaps from a barber shop in Peckham to Johannesburg, Harare, Kampala, Lagos and Accra over the course of a single day.

‘Joyous. Brilliantly acted. Life-affirming.’

★★★★★ Independent

‘Rich and exhilarating. A fascinating peek into the barber shop.’

★★★★★ The Stage

‘Throbs with energy and heat. Full of sadness and great joy.’

★★★★ Daily Telegraph


Help support us

Leeds Playhouse may be closed due to Coronavirus but we are glad to have teamed up with the National Theatre and Fuel for this stream via National Theatre at Home. As you enjoy Barber Shop Chronicles, please consider making a donation to support the long term future of Leeds Playhouse, working to create vital theatre in the heart of Yorkshire.

Leeds Playhouse is a Charity (no. 255460)



More Information

Audio described background to the play

Audio described notes of the set, characters and costume

This enhanced archive recording was captured by the National Theatre in January 2018 and features the original cast.

Our streaming performance of Barber Shop Chronicles is on 14 May at 7pm UK time. It will be available until 7pm on Thursday 21 May but you’ll need to start watching by 5pm UK time on 21 May to ensure you see it all.

We’re all about experiencing theatre together.

At a time when many theatre fans around the world aren’t able to visit National Theatre Live venues or local theatres, we’re excited to bring you National Theatre at Home.

You will be able to watch some of the best British theatre from the comfort of your living room, via YouTube for free, with each title available for one week.

Thank you to all the amazing artists who have allowed us to share Barber Shop Chronicles in this way, during a time when many theatre fans aren’t able to visit their local theatre.

Co-commissioned by Fuel and the National Theatre. Development funded by Arts Council England with the support of Fuel, National Theatre, Leeds Playhouse, The Binks Trust, British Council ZA, Òran Mór and A Play, a Pie and a Pint.


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Major funders
Arts Council England Leeds City Council The Liz and Terry Bramall Foundation
Principal Capital and Families Partner
Caddick Developments
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Irwin Mitchell Solicitors