Call Mr Robeson (3 stars)

This article is from 2010

Call Mr Robeson

Inspirational story of legendary singer

Having suffered a setback by losing his voice during the world premiere run of this show in Edinburgh three years ago, writer and star Tayo Aluko subsequently took it on tour around the world. This year the monodrama about the life of African-American singer and race activist Paul Robeson returns to the Fringe, and, happily, Aluko is on much better form.

Robeson came to fame as a singer and film star in the 1930s, and the prejudice and harassment he suffered as a black man radicalised him years ahead of Malcolm X and Martin Luther King. But his politicisation also led to Robeson being hounded by the US government and media, and after embracing Russian communism in the 1940s, he lost his career and liberty.

Armed with an appropriately robust vocal talent, Aluko does a fine job of singing and talking us through the incredible life of the international star and outspoken champion of his people and of oppressed workers around the world who never gave up the good fight.

Zoo Southside, 662 6892, until 30 Aug (not 23), 6.15pm, £8.

Call Mr Robeson

  • Directed by: Olusola Oyeleye
  • Written by: Tayo Aluko

Tayo Aluko's play detailing the life of actor, singer and civil rights campaigner Paul Robeson.

Call Mr. Robeson

  • 3 stars

Paul Robeson is a great and famous actor, singer and civil rights campaigner. As he gets progressively too radical and outspoken for the establishment's liking, he is branded a traitor and denied performing or travelling opportunities. As emotional and mental stress threaten to push him over the line between genius and…