Arcola Theatre presents

Search Party

Written and performed by Inua Ellams

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Award-winning poet and playwright Inua Ellams (Barber Shop Chronicles, Three Sisters) brings a special, audience-led poetry event to Arcola.

Choose a word, any word. Inua Ellams will search through his extensive archive of work: essays, prose pieces, plays and poems, for sections that contains that word and perform it to the audience, unrehearsed, live and direct.


Inua Ellams’s first play, The 14th Tale, debuted at Arcola in 2010 and transferred to the National Theatre; his KnightWatch: SouthS’tory was also produced here in 2012. Barber Shop Chronicles has played two sell-out runs at the National Theatre and a world tour. Across his work, Inua mixes the old with the new: traditional African storytelling with contemporary poetry, pencil with pixel, texture with vector images, with an emphasis on themes of identity, displacement and destiny.