Thursday, May 24, 2012

Nigerian Star Playwright Janice Okoh Serves Egusi Soup In London

The celebrated Nigerian prize winning playwright Janice Okoh is serving her delicious Egusi Soup to the celebs and others in London.

Egusi Soup is a new play about love, life and loss, with plenty of spicy bits!

Wed 23 May – Sat 9 June, Soho Theatre, London.

Sat 16 June, Mercury Theatre, Colchester

A fast, furious and funny new intergenerational and cross-cultural Nigerian family comedy from Janice Okoh. As the Anyias, a British-Nigerian family, pack their suitcases and prepare to head home to Lagos for a memorial service in honour of the late Mr Anyia, they soon realise they will need to get rid of some excess baggage first, and not just of the material kind. The chaotic return to London from the USA of the Anyias’ eldest daughter, Anne, disrupts the family equilibrium that has settled after her father’s death, and deeply held resentments resurface dramatically.

Janice Okoh is an award winning playwright. In 2011, her play The Real House (Three Birds) won the Bruntwood Prize and was short-listed for the Verity Bargate Award and the Alfred Fagon Award. Her recent theatre productions include: Top Brass (Theatre 503, 2010), a short play written in response to The Charming Man by Gabriel Bissett-Smith. Her recent radio plays include: Reunion (BBC Radio 4 Extra, 2011); Carnival, a short play for the From Fact to Fiction series (BBC Radio 4, 2010) and SE8 (BBC Radio 4, 2010). This year, Janice has adapted Malorie Blackman’s novel Noughts and Crosses for the Saturday Play (BBC Radio 4).

Making up the cast are: Ellen Thomas, Rhoda Ofori-Attah, Anniwaa Buachie, Nick Oshikanlu and Lace Akpojaro.

Ellen Thomas is one of the country’s leading black actresses. She has been twice nominated for Best Actress in the EMMA Awards and nominated as Best Actress by Screen Nation and The Black Media Awards.

Ellen has a hugely successful TV, film and stage career. She has appeared in Eastenders as Grace and 4 series of the hugely successful Teachers. Other regular roles include: 3 series of Cardiac Arrest and leading roles in London Bridge, Holding On and The Jury. Ellen also appeared in Buried Treasure alongside John Thaw for LWT which won the 2002 BAFTA Audience Award. Theatre work includes: Tiata Delights at The Almeida; Statement Of Regret at The National Theatre; The Estate, Soho Theatre; womanliness Monologues on Tour; Blest Be The Tie at The Royal Court; Maria in Twelfth Night at The Manchester Royal Exchange and A Bitter Herb at The Bristol old Vic, for which she won fabulous reviews.

Egusi Soup is a co-production between Soho Theatre and Menagerie Theatre Company in association with Mercury Theatre, Colchester.

Menagerie is one of the UK’s leading independent new writing theatre companies, seeking out and supporting talented new writers. As well as touring widely, Menagerie curates and produces the annual Hotbed Festival in Cambridge.
Egusi Soup was developed at Menagerie’s Sparks programme and then at Hotbed. Janice Okoh is a Menagerie Associate Writer.

Soho Theatre aims to bring the most entertaining, brave and theatrical new work to audiences across a programme spanning comedy, cabaret and theatre; with three spaces, a late night bar, innovative education projects and world famous writers’ centre, Soho Theatre is one of the most vibrant venues on London’s cultural scene.

Egusi Soup Facebook page:

For more information, tickets for press night (Friday 25th May), biogs, interviews or photographs, please contact:

Mhari Gallagher
t: 01223 322111
m: 07725739106

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