Elephant in the Room

Head of a person in the foreground and a zoomed out image of person standing in the background

Elephant in The Room, Performance by Lanre Malaolu, 2017, UK, 3:27 minutes

“Elephant in the Room” explores the complexities of experiencing mental illness from the perspective of a male. This choreographed piece by actor and dance-theatre maker Lanre Malaolu who attempts to dissect the stigma attached to mental health by following a day in the life of a victim, highlighting the constant internal and external battle to be “normal”.

Malaolu explores the thin line of having a banal ‘bad day’ and one that continually saps your life of energy and hope. Many men suffer from mental health without coming to terms and dealing with it. Macho or masculine behaviour tends to stop men from openly talking about their issues resulting in the suppression of emotion, forcing them to explain their mental state as just another ‘bad day’. But what happens when that bad day spills into a bad week, a bad month and so on and so forth…

Suicide is the biggest killer of men under the age of 45 years old in the UK. For this to change the attitude towards mental illness has to shift. Instead of viewing mental health as a self fabrication, there needs to be the same attention and gravity we give to a physical illness or injury, in order to truly heal the wounds of the mind.

This film will be available between 19-25 April 2021.