Review Round Up: They Drink it in the Congo, Almeida Theatre

Adam Brace’s latest play has opened at the Almeida Theatre, directed by Michael Longhurst. What have critics been saying about it? 

The Telegraph: **** Chris Bennion wrote: “Longhurst’s production embraces the whirligig nature of the writing.”

Time Out: *** Andrzej Lukowski summed the production up by saying: “it is courageous, funny and hugely ambitious new writing that also sheds light on the problems of an immensely complicated country: in its own very ironic, very self-aware way, it articulates the challenges facing the DRC today rather more successfully than its heroine does.”

The Stage: *** Mark Shenton commented that: “They Drink It in the Congo is a valiant but flawed attempt to contain a big, largely untold story.”

Evening Standard: *** Fiona Mountford called it: “an uncategorisable beast of a drama that is exuberant, sprawling, frustrating and occasionally confusing. Michael Longhurst’s production bounds energetically behind.”

The Arts Desk: Aleks Sierz thought: “the play is too long, too messy and its story lacks focus and genuine drama.”

Broadway World: *** “Ambitious and thought-provoking, but through an overstuffed format, in danger of following Steph’s white angel path to befuddled conscience assuaging.”

Culture Whisper: *** ” While provocative, visually compelling, and certainly thought-provoking,They Drink it in the Congo occasionally meanders and gets muddled in its vast scope.”

The Guardian: **** Michael Billington wrote: “Michael Longhurst’s production and Jon Bausor’s design actively embrace the play’s multiplicity of styles, which range from dialectical debate to graphic violence, and the piece is vividly acted.”

WhatsOnStage: **** Daisy Bowie-Sell described it as: “a sharply funny look at charity in this country, but it also, most vitally, sheds light on one of the most shocking conflicts of our time.”

The Times: *** Sam Marlowe found that: “The production is blurred and inconsistent; while some scenes are explosive, others drag and meander.”

Whats On Africa: “its humour and the scarce amount of representation of the Congolese story in which we are all so monumentally complicit – makes ‘They Drink it in the Congo’ an unmissable theatrical event.”

There Ought to be Clowns: “Brace’s use of black comedy makes it a devilishly good watch, even through the occasional longueur which the vibrancy of Michael Longhurst’s production can’t always disguise.”

Mature Times: “Andrew Brace’s new, sprawling anarchic satire, directed by Michael Longhurst, is not the easiest play to follow. Complex would be an understatement.”

They Drink it in the Congo is playing at the Almeida Theatre until the 1st October. For more information and to book tickets visit:




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