Actor reveals audiences walked out of musical Frozen saying casting is ‘woke cultural nonsense’
Nigerian-Irish actor Obioma Ugoala, who plays Kristoff in London musical Frozen, reveals four audience members walked out on ‘woke culture nonsense’ because the character isn’t ‘black’ in the film
- Obioma Ugoala, who lives in London, stars as Kristoff in Frozen the Musical
- The Nigerian-Irish actor has revealed viewers called his cast ‘woke’
- Fans took to Twitter to reassure him that his talent is appreciated on the show
A Nigerian-Irish actor starring in Frozen the Musical has revealed that a group of moviegoers walked out of the production recently because they disagreed with his casting.
Obioma Ugoala, who lives in London, took Twitter to speak out against the racism he faced while playing Kristoff in the Disney musical, which has been nominated for numerous awards since its West End debut.
He explained that he was left in “sadness” after hearing four audience members in their 50s who walked out of the show refer to its casting as “woke culture nonsense.”
Obioma Ugoala (pictured centre), who lives in London, took to Twitter to respond to viewers who complained about his casting in Frozen the Musical
The actor wrote: ‘#RepresentationMatters Love playing this show night after night in Drury Lane playing a love interest in a Disney musical opposite the crème de la crème of talent the West End has to offer. It’s the stuff of dreams for this dark-haired little boy, and yet…
“To those four audience members in their 50s who left the show, lamenting my casting as Kristoff as ‘woke cultural nonsense,’ I feel sorry for you that this Nigerian-Irish Londoner selling ice cream with a reindeer in as a best friend in a fictional country is a step too far for you.
‘I’m sorry that in a world of ice queens and magic strikes, this ‘darkie’ as you called me was beyond your imagination. Maybe you assumed you were safe to talk to me that way, not thinking you would be heard. Maybe the movie has a special place in your heart.
“My afro hair and my melanin skin are beyond the scope of what you could imagine. But, gentlemen and ladies, night after night I see hundreds of children watching our talented cast of all hues and colors and escaping into a magical world for two hours. I wish you had their eyes.
“The world is changing, I dare to dream, for the better. I had too many promised dreams beyond my reach, savvy venues weren’t for me, roles beyond my imagination. I’m glad a new generation is watching our show and feeling invited to dream bigger, better and brighter.
“I’m glad they are dreaming with kindness and imagining worlds where we are all included. I wish you had their eyes. The sadness you left me tonight will be replaced tomorrow morning by the renewed zeal of one who reminds us that we still have work to do. I wish you had their eyes.
Obioma Ugoala (pictured) who plays Kristoff in the highly acclaimed production, revealed that four audience members have recently come out
Posting on Twitter, Obioma explained that he was left in “sadness” by the actions of members of the public who left
The post racked up more than 2,000 likes as Twitter users reassured Obioma, who previously acted for the Royal Shakespeare Company, that his talent is appreciated on the show.
Since graduating from Drama Center London, the actor has spoken out against racial injustice in the arts and been a role model for others hoping to break into the industry.
One person responded to Obioma’s thread saying, “This is appalling and just plain unacceptable. I saw the show on Saturday and saw nothing but talent. An amazing Kristoff; an amazing young Anna. What’s wrong with people? God forbid them to go see Hamilton! Me, sir, I am in awe of your talent’
Another said: “You are loved, respected and admired by so many. I’m so sorry you had to experience this level of abject close-mindedness. Please receive my love tonight sir
A third added: “I’m so sorry this happened, it’s disgusting behavior you shouldn’t have to put up with.” Your Kristoff is amazing and there will be so many kids watching you and seeing themselves on that stage. Keep being amazing, so many people cherish you.
A stream of replies to the Twitter feed reassured Obioma that his talent is appreciated and encouraged him to inspire others