Perth Festival: "The Barbershop Chronicles" is a "Dynamic Bonzanza Full of Energy and Spectacle"
If The Barbershop Chronicles is anything to go by I think I ought to change my hairdresser. This dynamic bonzanza full of energy and spectacle is a diverse tale of individual and collective histories, a living tapestry for all who behold it, and one of those 'all' should be you. With the best audience interaction I've ever participated in and beats from the likes of Kendrick, Kanye and Khalid blasting across the stage you'll be all swept up in the choreographed chaos that is twelve actors and a surplus of audience members. This kicks the show off with a bang, juxtaposing the sombre energy to come later.
As the characters play for and without the audience there is a tangibility to the relationships forged on stage. Rarely does a show with so many players capture the fundamental essence of human relationships, but this one has it in the bag. Though it drags a bit towards the end, it is a long play, the vignette style portrays the depth that a single story narrative cannot, and offers insight into worlds many of us will never see. Open the book that is The Barbershop Chronicles and have it read to you in a myriad of accents, embodied by men whose tales you will never want to put down.
The tones of their deep choral voices echo through my mind in the following days, teaching me that there does not need to be understanding for their to celebration and empathy. Inua Ellams' script displays many languages, many of which the audience won't know, and asks us to consider the societies we live in; whose voices we hear louder.
This is a show that goes on; when you leave the theatre, when you get in your car, before you fall asleep, it's there. Experience the joy of beautiful theatre; theatre so good you get to take a bit of it home.