Theatre Review: The Secret Lives Of Baba Segi's Wives

The Secret Lives of Baba Segi’s Wives, Arcola Theatre ★★★★☆

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Theatre Review: The Secret Lives Of Baba Segi's Wives The Secret Lives of Baba Segi’s Wives, Arcola Theatre 4
Photo: Idil Sukan

There’s no subject matter taboo in The Secret Lives of Baba Segi’s Wives. This is a play where the title character’s penis is described as “so big that two men could share it and still be well-endowed.” Yet behind the frank depictions of sex and the comedy arising from it, there is some clever storytelling in this adaptation for stage by Rotimi Babatunde and directed by Femi Elufowoju jr.

Photo: Idil Sukan

With music, a lively cast and a few simple props the story of Baba Segi and his four wives in modern Nigeria is taken apart, dissected and explored. Women are traded as commodities and have to resort to deviousness to survive but it’s Baba Segi who’s the buffoon. In his quest for more children he submits to a sperm sample to the local hospital. This leads to a masturbation scene of jaw dropping epic proportions. An affirmation of life (albeit without polygamy) if there ever was one.

Photo: Idil Sukan

The Secret Lives of Baba Segi’s Wives, Arcola Theatre, Ashwin Street, E8 3DL. £12-26, until 21 July 2018.

Last Updated 18 June 2018