I've been in three RSC productions, two of them national tours. I've seen more of the UK, through those tours than I have from any other activity; leisure or otherwise.

I'm a Londoner. This year, more than any other, I've found myself referring to myself as a Londoner. I can't remember labelling myself so much (well not since adolescence). In the ten years between the tours I have changed and so has the UK. How I see myself in relation to the UK I haven't been calibrated as yet, but sometimes people, events and even theatrical productions force you to try.

CHU OMAMABALA as Oberon in a white suit on his knees with arms upraised
Chu Omamabala as Oberon
Photo by Topher McGrillis © RSC – Image Licensing

This summer so much seemed to shift in the country at a time when I was in a production whose whole purpose was to celebrate Shakespeare and his part in the fabric of who we are as a nation.

The nation is fragmented. If you're an ethnic minority I would argue you're more likely to have lived the results of that fragmentation.

Knowing yourself; who you are, what you believe in, where your boundaries lie becomes more important when the ground beneath your feet shifts.

The Dream production is a landmark in my life for many reasons; the national context helps me to understand how and why.

Chu Omamabala

Chu Omamabala

Chu Omamabala played the role of Oberon in our 2016 national tour of A Midsummer Night’s Dream. His previous credits for the RSC include Hecuba and The Canterbury Tales. 

Black History Month - October 2016

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