The P Word at the Bush Theatre

The P Word Reviews at the Bush Theatre

The P Word has opened at the Bush Theatre in London.

Waleed Akhtar’s sharp-witted new play charts the parallel lives of two gay Pakistani men

Zafar flees homophobic persecution in Pakistan to seek asylum in the UK; and Londoner Bilal is ground down by years of Grindr and the complexity of being a brown gay man. Their worlds are about to change forever.

Directed by Anthony Simpson-Pike (Lava), the play stars Waleed Akhtar and Esh Alladi.

More reviews to follow.

Links:
Bush Theatre

The Times
★★★★

"A tremendous two-man rom-com"

"... The P Word delights on pretty much every level. Akhtar has the two men each narrating their stories to us as well as interacting. He has filled his script with adroit, self-aware exchanges and reflections. And if we know — roughly — the trajectory of the tale as this pair start to share movie nights and riverside walks, the characters are too well drawn, their problems too tangible, for predictability to be a problem."

"So The P Word gives you what you want as well as telling you what you don’t already know"

Dominic Maxwell, The Times
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The Stage
★★★

"The actors shine"

"It’s complicated being Pakistani and gay – and Waleed Akhtar’s The P Word doesn’t flinch from it."

"Directed by Anthony Simpson-Pike, it’s a love story of heat and heart, but it takes some time to get there."

"Akhtar’s script is self-aware and sprinkled with humour"

Anya Ryan, The Stage
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TimeOut
★★★★★

"Two very different gay Pakistani men cross paths in Waleed Akhtar’s tremendous new play"

"Waleed Akhtar’s gorgeous, devastating new play is split between two Britains. One’s the twenty-first century, ‘love is love’ home of corporate Pride sponsorship and endless app-enabled sexual possibilities. And the other one’s tougher, older – medieval, almost – a place where gay asylum seekers are intrusively questioned about their sexual behaviour, and banished to their deaths. The resulting drama might sound grim, and sometimes it is, but ‘The P Word’ is also heart-meltingly lovely, full of faith in the transformative power of love and friendship."

Alice Saville, TimeOut
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👤 📅15 September 2022
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📷 Main photo: The P Word at the Bush Theatre. Photo Craig Fuller

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