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The Colored Museum


By George C. Wolfe
Directed by Don Warrington

Passionate and personal, The Colored Museum simultaneously celebrates, satirises and subverts the African-American legacy.


The Colored Museum is a thought-provoking, satirical show that has delighted and discomforted audiences since it was written by George C. Wolfe in America in 1986.

Taking place in a cultural museum, the 11 living 'exhibits' explore African-American identity in an exhibition of stereotypes.

Through characters like the pert and ever-smiling Miss Pat, airline hostess for Celebrity Slaveship, and The Man, a successful businessman who only wants to be Black at the weekend, Wolfe confronts history and clichés with gutsy humour. By retiring these 11 stereotypical characters and attitudes to a museum, he makes room for the future; for new stories and ideas.

Provocative and seriously funny, The Colored Museum will stir your emotions and leave you in stitches.

"From the moment perky flight attendant, Miss Pat, tells us to .fasten your shackles. and insists that there must be "no drumming", it's clear it's going to be a bumpy ride. This fearlessly funny skit on the transatlantic slave trade sets the tone for George C Wolfe's shameless satire that both celebrates and mocks African-American identity and stereotypes." 
The Guardian Read the full review

"The Colored Museum is definitely at its best when walking this line between light and darkness; drawing laughs while stimulating thought."
So So Gay magazine Read the full review

"I was really pleased to see that Talawa were reviving The Colored Museum, and am delighted to be able to report that they do full justice to it."
remotegoat Read the full review

"The Colored Museum has such a light touch that it elicits a surge of welcome recognition throughout the entire audience."
Scott Matthewman Read the full review

"...the performances from the five strong ensemble are quick-witted and exuberant."

"The production is often riotously funny."

"The audacity of the writing, coupled with the crackling energy of the acting, makes this provocative exhibition well worth a visit."
The Times

"Terry Doe's gold-lamé-clad, finger-clicking gay Miss Roj was a hoot, the sassiest reaction you could possibly have to double discrimination..."
The British Theatre Guide Read the full review

    Talawa - The Colored Museum

  • New York Times

    "Uncompromising wit...fearless humour....high sophistication."

  • The Lydia and Manfred Gorvy Lecture Theatre, Victoria and Albert Museum, London: 15 - 23 October 2011
    The Colored Museum

    The Lydia and Manfred Gorvy Lecture Theatre, Victoria and Albert Museum, London: 15 - 23 October 2011
    Black Myth Versus History

  • The Colored Museum | 15 - 23 October 2011

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