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Benedict Lombe’s Lava is an explosive debut that will turn the way you see the world on its axis.


This is nice, init? I like it. Good little set-up to tell you the story of my name. The story of my true name.

When a woman receives an unexpected letter from the British Passport Office, she is forced to confront an old mystery: why does her South African passport not carry her first name? Armed with the soundtrack to your favourite 90s TV shows, she sets out on a journey that will take her back to the turmoil of Mobutu’s Congo, growing up in post-Apartheid South Africa, moving to Ireland and finding love in a hostile England .

As her journey becomes inextricably linked with the tides of global history, how far will she go to unravel the truth? By turns wickedly funny and strikingly lyrical, Benedict Lombe’s Lava is an explosive debut that will turn the way you see the world on its axis.

If you can't make it to the theatre, the show will be available to stream from 16 Aug - 21 Aug. Please visit the Bush Theatre's What's On page for more information.

Critic reviews

Ronkẹ Adékoluẹjo is sensational in Benedict Lombe’s red-hot eruption of a monologue

Time Out

One of the best London plays to debut this year

The Upcoming

Incredibly funny, magnetic, and brilliant

Broadway World

Poetic writing, mesmerically performed

The Arts Desk

Benedict Lombe’s expansive debut, charting the Black experience with the emphasis on Black joy, is fuelled by a powerful central performance

The Stage

A captivating, continent-spanning one-woman show

The Guardian

An engrossing and exciting piece of theatre


A penetrating and witty monologue about race, roots and identity

The Times

Wry, magnetic and urgent study of black identity and displacement

Evening Standard

Lava at the Bush Theatre asks ‘is Britain racist?’ – and offers a red-hot answer

The Telegraph

Date & time

Until 21 Aug
Live Fri 9 Jul - Sat 7 Aug, 2.30pm & 7.30pm

Streaming Mon 16 Aug - Sat 21 Aug, 2.30pm & 7.30pm
Runtime: 1 hr


7 Uxbridge Road London W12 8LJ London, UK · Get Directions
out of 5 stars
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