Arts & Culture

The award-winning one man docu-play about a 2002 trip to Afghanistan comes to the Arcola Theatre

Afghanistan is Not Funny is a play about a comedians search for new material by travelling to Afghanistan, and it’s all true.

In 2002 Henry Naylor went on a ten day trip into a warzone with friend and photographer Sam Maynard after being invited by his old flatmate – a cameraman at the BBC in the region at the time.

The friend said to Henry, that if he wanted to write jokes about the conflict, something he was attempting in his job as a stand up and writer back home, he needed to see it for himself.

Captured by terrorist – a near landmine miss and a meeting with a warlord – the trip changed Henry, Sam, and their art froever.

Performed by Naylor, in front of Maynard’s pictures, the docu-play takes us back to the start of a real-life modern tragedy set in the middle east, in a country now under the leadership of the Taliban, that’s no less cured of it’s deep rooted problems.


Afghanistan is not funny runs until the 11th of March at the Arcola Theatre.

James Dickman 22nd February 2023

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