Elephant in the Room

Dates and Times

Tue 2 - Sat 20 April 2019 at 7.15pm

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Ticket information

£12/10 (conc.)

Book Tickets

Part of our Spring 2019 programme. Browse the full season here

Take advantage of our double-bill ticket offer, and book two different shows on the same night for just £16, or make the most of our Season Pass and book tickets for three different shows to receive a 10% discount.  Simply add the tickets for the shows into your basket and we’ll do the rest.

Presented by Lanre Malaolu

Something’s wrong. Can’t get out of bed, can’t concentrate, can’t shake the mounting tension. Something unspoken is building up, leaking out, taking over…

Fusing physical theatre, hip hop dance and spoken word, Elephant in The Room is an explosive solo that explores the mental health crisis and the phenomenon of toxic masculinity. This semi-autobiographical work, created and performed by Lanre Malaolu, takes a sharp sideways look at the insidious stigma around mental health issues, asking how race, class and culture can affect the way we choose to address them. And what happens when we don’t…

With live sound manipulation from Jan Brzezinski and dramaturgical support from Season Butler and Zoe Lafferty.

Commissioned by Camden People’s Theatre with support from the Paul Hamlyn Foundation.

Supported by Arts Council England, Battersea Arts Centre, Camden Peoples Theatre, Talawa Theatre Company, The WellcomeTrust, MGCfutures and The Place.

Please note the performance on Thursday 11th April is BSL interpreted.



“The ‘elephant’ is never named, but it is shown – beautifully.”The Stage

“Malaolu’s poignant and thought-provoking use of words, in fusion with a dynamic physicality in dance, results in a powerful tour de force.” – ★★★★ The Upcoming

“Amazingly dexterous physical theatre.” Camden Citizen 

“Angry, funny, sad, tragic and wise – a truly extraordinary parable for our times.” The Greenwich Visitor

“His dancing spoke a thousand words” Black Girls Guide to Theatre

“Elephant In The Room provides just a glimmer into the struggles faced by many black men across the country, and through his performance, Lanre is forcing his audience to think about this, and inevitably, sparking a much-needed discussion.” A Nation of Billions

Check out the trailer

Production photos

Interviews with the artist

“Just having a conversation. That’s one of the things I’ll be happy with. Everyone just talking, you know?”
– The Guardian

“I do wonder if the response would have been different if I had walked into that doctors office as a white man, or white woman – rather than a black guy in a tracksuit. Maybe I would have been listened to quicker.”
– Metro

“If you admit that you have depression or anxiety, do you change in the eyes of other people? […] It’s almost like you are tainted. You’re seen as damaged, different, weak.” – Run Riot

“I also was keen to explore where comedy fits in the show, it’s not all about dark clouds! I’m essentially talking about life, so really challenged myself to look at the light shades as well as the dark” – Theatre Full Stop

About the Artist

Lanre Malaolu is a director, choreographer and performer. He was chosen as the overall winner of the  Zealous Emerge performance prize, a nationwide search championing the UK’s best-emerging performance artists in 2018. Lanre was also the chosen choreographer on the inaugural OLD VIC 12 talent network.
FIGURE, a multi-award winning film which Lanre directed & choreographed, has screened at film festivals around the world including Zanzibar, Texas, Toronto, Vancouver as well as being selected for the BAFTA recognized Aesthetica Film festival in 2018. He was also the choreographer & movement artist on The British Council film Dear Mr. Shakespeare, which aired on the BBC & was selected for the Sundance Film Festival in 2017. 

Recently, Lanre was awarded a BFI funded grant on behalf of Doc Society (Made in Truth fund) to direct and choreograph his documentary-movement film “The Circle”, which is currently in post-production.

Alongside his work in dance, Lanre is a trained actor, a graduate of Drama Centre London, working extensively in theatre & television.

www.lanremalaolu.com | Twitter: @LanreMalaoluInstagram: @lanremalaolu #ElephantintheroomUK

Image credit (c) Lanre Malaou

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