Playwright Tolu Agbelusi's latest play Ilé La Wà (We are Home) finished a successful run in Stratford, UK. Now the play is set for a six-city regional tour around London and neighboring cities beginning April 10. The play's first stop is at the Proteus Theatre in Basingstoke.
As Alt-Africa reports, the play addresses identity through dissecting the UK's immigration laws. It stars Agbelusi and Antonia Layiwola, Mamito Kukwikila and Winston Sarpong as four characters who are detained when they can't show a valid ID during a spot check. The characters' legal situation puts a spotlight on "the realities of always being 'the other' in the place you call home."
Agbelusi said to the outlet that while the play comments on the feeling of the other, it also takes a stab at the 2018 Windrush Scandal, in which at least 83 people were wrongly deported from the UK. The scandal disproportionately affected those of the "Windrush generation," British subjects from the West Indies who migrated to the UK in 1948 via the ship Empire Windrush.
"When I wrote Ilé La Wà, I was contemplating how society decides who gets to belong," she said. "It feels very much about the Windrush Scandal, but that's a new face for the consequences of our government leading the charge to say some of us don't belong. Government-sanctioned go home vans, institutional racism, threatened deportation of children who've lived here most of their lives and the mental toll of feeling you don't belong at home, were just a few of my preoccupations."
Aside from Basingstoke, the play will travel to Portsmouth, Stowe, Salford, London and Leicester. Alt-Africa has full dates, as well as the official site for the play, whenifindhome.com.