The Yard Theatre announce the cast and creative team for the world premiere of An unfinished man by Dipo Baruwa-Etti. Directed by Taio Lawson the production will run from 12 February to 12 March 2022 (Press Night on 17 February).
Kayode hasn’t had a job for seven years. He has been cursed by a spirit from back home in Nigeria –
(Can’t we juss name it? – Ur depressed.)
He needs to get help –
(Therapy won’t undo the spell, Kayode.)
His marriage is suffering –
(I need ya help ta stage an intervention.)
His mother thinks she knows what to do.
(The Lord told me and I went to Pastor Matanmi.)
Juju exists, spirits battle, and the witches and wizards of Lagos chant loudly in East London.
Dipo Baruwa-Etti is a filmmaker, playwright, and poet. As a playwright, Dipo was the 2020 Channel 4 Playwright on attachment with the Almeida Theatre and shortlisted for the George Devine ‘Most Promising Playwright’ award that same year. His plays include The Sun, the Moon, and the Stars (Theatre Royal Stratford East) and he is published by Faber & Faber. For screen, he wrote and directed the award-winning The Last Days, a BFI Network/BBC/Tannahill Productions short film, and has original projects in development with companies including Blueprint Pictures and Duck Soup Films. As a poet, he has been published in The Good Journal, Ink Sweat & Tears, Amaryllis, and had his work showcased nationwide as part of End Hunger UK’s touring exhibition on food insecurity.
Taio Lawson is currently the Associate Director of Kiln Theatre. His Directing credits include NW Stories (Kiln Theatre), HOME Digital (Young Vic), Hang (Sheffield Crucible), Love and Information (LAMDA), Macbeth (Royal Conservatoire of Scotland), White Devil (East 15), Home – Installation (Young Vic), How To Make Love To A Muslim Without Freaking Out (Rehearsed Reading, Bush Theatre), Face in a Jar (St Paul’s Furzedown Church/Rhoda McGaw Theatre), What We Are, 90’s Kid (ETC Theatre), Gutted ‘n’ Battered (UK/International Tour) and Sexy Buff Ting (Cockpit Theatre). Taio was Resident Director at Sheffield Theatres where he collaborated on: Love and Information, Frost/Nixon, The Wizard of Oz, and Desire Under The Elms. As Assistant Director credits include Life of Galileo, Sizwe Banzi Is Dead (Young Vic) Oil, They Drink It in the Congo (Almeida Theatre), Octagon (Arcola Theatre), and Perseverance Drive (Bush Theatre). Taio is also a patron for COMMON which is a non-profit arts organisation which exists to support the theatre industry in achieving greater socio-economic diversity, and make theatre more accessible to the working class, whether they be artists, audiences, or communities.
Fode Simbo (plays Kayode) trained at Guildhall School of Acting. Theatre credits include Solaris (Royal Lyceum and Lyric Hammersmith), The Princess and the Hustler (Bristol Old Vic), and Young Marx (Bridge Theatre). Film credits include Fisherman’s Friends 2. Television credits include Summer of Rockets, Vigil, and Little Women.
Teri Ann Bobb-Baxter (Kikiope) trained at the Arts Educational School in London where she completed her BA in Acting. She also attended the BRIT School for Performing Arts, training in Musical Theatre. Theatre credits include Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom (National Theatre), Future Voices (Southwark Playhouse), Expensive Sh** (Traverse Theatre). Television credits include Call the Midwife, War of the Worlds, Bridgerton, Clink, and Hard Sun.
Selina Jones (Itan) trained at LAMDA. An unfinished man is her professional stage debut. She recently shot the highly anticipated second season of Ridley Scott’s Raised by Wolves for HBO Max. The series is due to air in February 2022 where Selina can be seen playing the role of ‘Grandmother’. Selina recently played one of the lead roles in the short film Nadia’s Gift and starred in another short, Medea, playing the title role. Her credits whilst at drama school include Nine Night, The Winter’s Tale, The Wolves, and The Seagull.
Mark Springer (Matanmi) trained at Manchester Metropolitan School of Television & Theatre. Theatre includes Sing Yer Heart Out For The Lads (Chichester Festival Theatre), The Island (Dukes, Lancaster and Southwark Playhouse), Henry V, Troilus & Cressida, The Merchant of Venice, The Darker Face of The Earth (National Theatre), Thomas More, A New Way To Please You, Believe What You Will (RSC), Macbeth, Much Ado About Nothing and Romeo & Juliet (Shakespeare’s Globe), Don Juan (Citizens), King Lear (Royal Exchange Theatre/Talawa), The Emperor Jones (LOST Theatre), Chigger Foot Boys (Ovalhouse/Strongback Productions), Meet The Mukherjees (Bolton Octagon), Where The Mangrove Grows and Songs of Grace & Redemption (Theatre 503), The Chimes (Southwark Playhouse), The Suppliants (Gate), A Taste of Honey (Watford), Night & Day (Northampton). Television includes Shadow & Bone, One Night, Buried (BAFTA Best Drama), New Tricks, Dr Who, Sea of Souls, Eastenders, Holby City, Law & Order (UK), Rose & Maloney, In 2 Minds, Merchant of Venice, Doctors, Second Generation and The Bill. Film includes Kingslayer, Bull, King Lear (Talawa/Royal Exchange), Sahara (Paramount Pictures), Acceptable Damage (Rebel Without A Crew).
Lucy Vandi (Layo) trained at Mountview. She previously appeared at The Yard Theatre in The Crucible. Theatre credits include Tina, The Tina Turner Musical (Aldwych Theatre), How Far Apart? (Arcola Theatre), The Midnight Gang (Chichester Festival Theatre), Hoard (Bush Theatre), Guys & Dolls (Royal Exchange Theatre), School of Rock (Gillian Lynne Theatre), Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom, The Life of Galileo and Jerry Springer: The Opera (National Theatre), The Last Session (Tristan Bates Theatre) and The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe (Leicester Haymarket Theatre). Television credits include Casualty, Bridgerton (Season 2), EastEnders, Doctors, and Mile High.