Nollywood Dreams (MCC Theater)
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Nollywood Dreams (MCC Theater)

Nollywood Dreams (MCC Theater) NYC Reviews and Tickets

(45 Reviews)
Members say
Funny, Entertaining, Great acting, Delightful, Clever

Jocelyn Bioh's long-awaited romantic comedy set in the burgeoning world of 1990s Nollywood. 

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Member Reviews (45)

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Light, Farcical, Quirky, Funny, Delightful

See it if Sharp, energetic farce about competitive show business people making a "B" movie in 1990's Nigeria. The TV hostess was hilarious.

Don't see it if You are looking for more substance.

Clever, Relevant, Great staging, Great acting, Entertaining

See it if You enjoy the plays of Jacqueline Bioh. You are interested in the way other countries approach the business of movie making.

Don't see it if You can’t deal with heavy Indian dialect and won’t be able to follow the plot because the actors often speak very rapidly.


See it if You like a cute little play about movies made in Africa.

Don't see it if You want a profound play with any depth.

Great acting, Great staging, Entertaining

See it if you want a lighthearted show about the universality of folks dreaming about being in the movies.Set is fun.Acting is very good.

Don't see it if you are looking for something serious or touching or meaningful. This one is just for fun.

Entertaining, Great staging, Delightful, Clever, Funny

See it if you want a bit of lighthearted fun. Very enjoyable.

Don't see it if you want a drama or musical.

Fluffy, Entertaining, Great acting, Great writing, Funny

See it if lighthearted fare, well-acted especially if know anything about nollywood.

Don't see it if looking for serious drama - this is pure fun done well


See it if Light rom com of a younger woman trying to land a Nollywood film role.

Don't see it if Predictable, light plot; sitcom / rom com humor; some overacting aren't your thing. Read more

Fine, Funny, Fluffy

See it if you want to support work by Black creative teams; you are looking for a lighthearted but ultimately fairly shallow comedy

Don't see it if you want a fully developed plot with characters with strong rationales; you want a deep or moving story Read more

Critic Reviews (10)

The New York Times
November 11th, 2021

"“Nollywood Dreams” is spirited and casual, with the knockabout rhythms and narrative shortcuts of Hollywood in its early years, before flickers became films...A play about the enjoyable makeshiftness of early Nollywood films therefore gets an enjoyably makeshift treatment: Form follows dysfunction. Ali’s direction emphasizes color and comfort over snap and discipline. (Dede Ayite’s costumes nail all four.)"
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Time Out New York
November 11th, 2021

"Director Saheem Ali’s production is handsome and fluid, flowing seamlessly on Arnulfo Maldonado’s multi-faced scenic design. But it’s the deft and lively performances from the cast, and characteristically knockout costumes by Dede Ayite, that animate the story with irresistible vibrancy. If Bioh’s plot seems somehow both predictable and far-fetched, that appears to reflect the style of Nollywood movies, as evidenced by a hilarious coda that offers a taste of them here."
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November 11th, 2021

"Bioh’s dialogue is purposefully sitcom-ish and charming, whether it’s exaggerated or playing to emotions more subtle, and her language is seamless. Never allowing herself to be held down by the weighty, social-cultural constructs of class and money in Nigeria in the ’90s, Bioh’s fast-moving comic text is warm, wonky and laugh-out-loud funny. With that pace, cast and musicality, this version of Nollywood is, indeed, a dream."
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November 11th, 2021

"Bioh also provides the actors sturdy platforms in the characters she writes...The performers keep us laughing throughout, grounding their characters' eccentricities in real objectives and insecurities."
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Lighting & Sound America
November 12th, 2021

Bioh has enjoyed acclaim with the 2017 breakout hit School Girls; Or, the African Mean Girls Play, and last summer's Merry Wives at Shakespeare in the Park, but this effort is a bit weaker than its predecessors. Nollywood Dreams, which showcases some talented young people and an attention-getting production design, is certainly good for a few laughs. But it also passes in a flash, not leaving much of an impression.
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New York Stage Review
November 11th, 2021

"4 stars! You don’t have to be a fan of Nollywood movies, or even have a clue what Nollywood means, to thoroughly enjoy Jocelyn Bioh’s hilarious new comedy. Set in Lagos in the early 1990s, when the scrappy, low-budget Nigerian film industry was beginning its rise to becoming one of the largest in the world, Nollywood Dreams feels universal in its send-up of celebrity culture and show business dreams. While not quite as emotionally resonant as Bioh’s breakthrough work School Girls; or, the African Mean Girl Play, it delivers ample doses of the laughs and heart for which the playwright has quickly made a name for herself."
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New York Stage Review
November 11th, 2021

"4 stars! This is to readily admit Nollywood Dreams is a generally lightweight confection that even includes a few weak spots along is merry path. But it’s also to acknowledge that, thank providence, lightweight comedies have an often-forgotten prominent place in literary circles."
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Front Row Center
November 23rd, 2021

"A show about following your dream and what you can accomplish as your most authentic self, Nollywood Dreams (running at MCC Theater through November 28) is a charming and heart-warming comedy for everyone. Playwright Jocelyn Bioh (author of Merry Wives at the Public this summer and School Girls; Or, the African Mean Girls Play) and director Saheem Ali take us on a simultaneously campy and genuine journey with these relatable and larger-than-life personalities."
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Exeunt Magazine
November 11th, 2021

"Here, Bioh employs a masterful and hilarious dramatic device directed with aplomb by Saheem Ali as the stage transforms from the sisters’ living room into the set of the TV show. Dominating proceedings and quite frankly stealing the show is Adenikeh, embodied with outstanding comic skill and charisma by Abena."
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November 5th, 2021

"Nollywood Dreams is a winsome romantic comedy about doe-eyed ambition, dreams coming true, and in pure Nigerian fashion, the triumph of the underdog."
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