What To Watch On Stage October 2023

Theatre highlights this October include Clyde’s at Donmar Warehouse.

You can also catch Elephant by Anoushka Lucas and Mustapha Matura’s Meetings directed by JMK Prize winner Kalungi Ssebandeke

Dugsi Dayz by Sabrina Ali.

Four students find themselves stuck in dugsi detention…

What did they do to end up here? And is there any chance of them getting on? Salma, Yasmin, Munira, and Hani each see the world in radically different ways. As they subvert Somali folk tales and reminisce about their childhoods, this hour together may reveal that they have more in common than they thought.

Dugsi Dayz runs at New Diorama Theatre from 3-14 October 2023.

Othello starring Martins Imhangbe

Othello is at the peak of his success – in life, in war, and in love until he finds himself utterly betrayed by the person he trusted the most.

Othello runs at Riverside Studios Wednesday from 4th-Sunday 29th October 2023.

FLIP! by Racheal Ofori directed by Emily Aboud

Examining the relationship between two young Black women and an obsession with social media.

Meet Carleen and Crystal. The influencers with cultural commentary that will have you in stitches! Love them or hate them, there’s no stopping their fast-growing online following.

Offline, Carleen has her reservations about their cyber personas, but she idolises Crystal and would follow her anywhere…even to FLIP!, the new social media giant that has everyone hooked – and Carleen and Crystal are no exception; especially when it seems that their videos could make them famous.

Superstardom, followers, fame, influence, money: it’s all just one click away. FLIP! is the answer to everything they’ve ever dreamed of. But is it too good to be true?

Flip! tours the UK opening Alphabetti in Newcastle (10-28 Oct), before Summerhall in Edinburgh (30 Oct – 4 Nov) and Soho Theatre in London (7-25 Nov).

Choir Boy by Tarell Alvin McCraney

Pharus, a young, black, queer student leading the legendary gospel choir at his elite, all-boys prep school in America.

When Pharus’ pride is hurt by one of his fellow students, we’re sent on an electrifying voyage through the growing pains of humanity, as the boys navigate sexuality, race, identity, and brotherhood in their journey to becoming men.

This tender, coming-of-age story is threaded throughout with soul-stirring a cappella gospel hymns and spirituals. It is a beautiful, joyous play which rejoices in all that it means to march to your own drum.

Choir Boy runs at The Bristol Old Vic from Thursday 12th October – Saturday 11th November 2023.

Clyde’s by Lynn Nottage directed by Lynette Linton

It’s kind of a ritual, we speak the truth. Then, let go and cook.

In the bustling kitchen of a run-down Pennsylvania truck stop, the formerly incarcerated staff have been given a second chance. Under the tyrannical eye of their boss Clyde, this unlikely team strives to create the perfect sandwich, as they dream of leaving their past mistakes behind for a better life.

Clyde’s runs at Donmar Warehouse from Friday 13th October – Tuesday 2nd December 2023.

Elephant by Anoushka Lucas

A piano came through the sky and landed in Lylah’s council flat, just for her. As she pours over the keys and sound floods into all the rooms, Lylah falls in love. At school, Lylah can’t ask questions – she’s got to be good, good, good or else she’ll lose her scholarship. At home she can’t ask questions; her cousins say she talks weird, and her parents are distracted. 

So she asks her piano: Where did you come from? Why are you here? And their shared history tumbles into the light. Part gig, part piano lesson, part journey through Empire – Elephant is a new Bush commission thatfirst appeared as part of the Bush’s Protest series, a response to the murder of George Floyd.

Elephant runs at Bush Theatre, London from Saturday 14th October – Saturday 4th November 2023.

Meetings directed by Kalungi Ssebandeke

To the bemusement of his wife Jane, Hugh becomes obsessed with the foods of his Trinidadian childhood and hires cook, Elsa to indulge his nostalgic passion.

Meetings runs at Orange Tree Theatre from Wednesday 18th October – Saturday 11th November 2023.

The Night Woman by Julene Robinson

Inspired by the true story of Robinson’s grandmother who was shunned and ostracised to the dark corners of post colonial Jamaica due to her African spiritual beliefs, The Night Woman acts as a reminder that even though misery and suffering exist in the darkness, it is also where love is made and resistance is formed. 

Skilfully portraying three different women who’ve found strength in unexpected places, Robinson guides the audience on an exhilarating journey transitioning through time and generations ending in our present day, with Jamaican folk songs and Afro-Caribbean movement and music taking centre stage.

The Night Woman by Julene Robinson – Image credit: Chadley Larnelle

The Night Woman runs at The Pit, Barbican from Thursday 19th – Saturday 21st October 2023.

Roll Your Sleeves With Eve by Shamila Sulaiman

part of Theatre Peckham’s Young Gifted & Black festival coordinated by Jamel Alatise.

RYSWE is a futuristic piece, set in 2050. A romantic comedy/drama about a badly behaved celebrity chef who goes through intrusive, borderline illegal therapy to confront her demons from her chaotic past, both romantic and familial relationships – all broadcasted for the world to see.

Roll Your Sleeves With Eve runs at Theatre Peckham from Friday 20th – Sunday 22nd October 2023.

One Drop by Sonya Lindfors

Defying definition and belonging to multiple categories, the work dives into the poetics and politics of relations, creating a performance that reignites connections lost or forgotten.

The title of the work refers to two separate concepts – the one drop rhythm which is a reggae style drum beat as well as to the one drop rule of the Race Separation Act, created in the United States in the early 1900s, according to which a single drop of “Black blood” made a person “Black” despite their appearance. Through its multiple starting points, the work interrogates the ghosts of the Western stage and its entanglements and relationships to capitalism, coloniality and modernity.

One Drop -Image Credit: Tuukka Ervasti

One Drop runs at Battersea Arts Centre from Thursday 19th – Friday 20th October.


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