Win tickets to a special reading of Chinua Achebe’s Things Fall Apart at London’s Southbank Centre


To celebrate the 60th anniversary of Chinua Achebe’s Things Fall Apart, London’s Southbank Centre is hosting a one-off reading of the hugely influential novel on Sunday 15 April.

First published in 1958, the work examines the complexities of an Igbo society and its destabilising relationship with British colonialism. Things Fall Apart was ground breaking for its authentic description of the African experience free from imperialist clichés and has since sold over 12 million copies worldwide. Achebe has influenced successive generations of artists, including author Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, whose debut novel Purple Hibiscus opens with a sentence referencing this book, and musicians The Roots who named an album after it.

This live, 330-minute reading has been abridged by editor and literary critic, Ellah Allfrey, and will be performed by a cast including actors Lucian Msamati, Olu Jacobs and Adesua Etomi, Bloc Party singer Kele Okereke, authors Jennifer Nansubuga Makumbi, Chibundu Onuzo and Ben Okri OBE, and publisher Margaret Busby OBE. 

“I read Things Fall Apart for the first time as a teenager. It was like a light went on in my brain,” Onuzo says of her own personal experience of the book. “I discovered that yes it was a classic but it was also fresh and vibrant and alive. It's a story that tells us how human beings adapt, or refuse to adapt, to change. It's a constant theme in life.”

Part of the spring programming at Southbank Centre’s newly re-opened Queen Elizabeth Hall, there will also be a reading of Doris Lessing’s The Golden Notebook on Sunday 22 April.

Things Fall Apart, Sunday 15 April 2018, 2pm, Southbank Centre’s Queen Elizabeth Hall, ages 16+, £20. For more information click here


Photography Jerry Bauer, Blake Images, Mark Rusher

Published on 02/04/2018