Omari trained at the Arts Educational Schools, London, graduating in 2015.
His theatre credits include Rush at the King’s Head Theatre, Peter Pan and Jesus Christ Superstar at the Regent’s Park Open Air Theatre, Clarke Peters Five Guys Named Moe at the Marble Arch Theatre, Kneehigh’s Tristan & Yseult at Shakespeare’s Globe, The Life at the Southwark Playhouse, Annie Get Your Gun at the Sheffield Crucible and High Society at the Old Vic.
Omari returned to the Old Vic to perform in Emma Rice’s adaptation of Wise Children, the inaugural production for her new company of the same name. The production then toured several cities around the UK.
Omari recently starred in Russell T Davies’ critically acclaimed smash hit series It’s A Sin for Red Productions/Channel 4/ HBO Max.
He is currently starring in Constellations at the Vaudeville Theatre opposite Russell Tovey which has opened to rave reviews.
Omari Douglas in Constellations
- The new acting teams are stunning. The Douglas-Tovey is undoubtedly the sexiest iteration of the script. The opening gambit where Marianne, rechristened Manuel for the enchanting Douglas, points out to a bemused Roland that it’s impossible to lick your own elbows, has never sounded like such a come-on, and numerous subsequent exchanges appear to be bathed in a post coital glow often unexplored by the other teams of actors.Tovey’s laddish persona fits Roland like a glove and he is hilarious as a man often bewildered both by his own feelings and the sheer magnetic force that Douglas’s beautiful force of nature pulls on him. This pair may be the funniest but they are also the most heartrending: the break in Tovey’s voice as he tries to negotiate his partner’s potential descent into the abyss is one of the most moving things on any current London stage. Whatsonstage.com
- Douglas and Tovey’s same-sex version is perhaps the richest yet. Douglas, so wonderful in Russell T Davies’s It’s a Sin, is just as charismatic here as renamed scientist Manuel.A fabulous flirt, he’s also passionate about his mind-blowingly complex work – a beguiling mix of playfulness and formidable intellect. Twice Tovey cuts off any possibility of connection between them, but when they do come together, the shifts in tone and power balance are startling.
In some scenarios, Tovey’s Roland is an angry bully, even a stalker; in others, he’s an unassuming, likeable bloke who gazes adoringly at Manuel as if he can hardly believe his luck.
A chance encounter, after a break-up, at a ballroom class goes from tense stand-off to gorgeous, gliding pas de deux. One interlude – in a universe in which the couple communicate in British Sign Language – has a devastating, near-silent grace. These are stellar performances in a fascinating theatrical experiment. iNews
- Douglas and Tovey’s kinetic performances have the edge here. They share a naturally playful, even-handed chemistry that breezes adroitly through razor-sharp comic timing and the abrupt changes of scene. The Telegraph
- Douglas and Tovey bristle electrically with contrasts. Douglas effervesces on stage, bringing a quicksilver charisma to Manuel’s unstoppable flow of words. Tovey gives Roland a tongue-tied plaintiveness unpicked by bursts of eccentricity. He’s wonderfully expressive non-verbally. Their physicality together is the motor that drives some big comic scenes but also a whiplash-quick moment of shock brutality in a darker timeline.Their pairing lands Payne’s beautifully measured unpeeling of the many layers of who we are (and can be) in a big, bold terrain. It plays with ideas of masculinity, while taking the interplay of near-misses and misunderstandings into vivid comic choreography. The Stage
- Indeed, of the four versions, it is the one that strays furthest from the original concept that feels the most authentic, in part because of the incredible performances from Omari Douglas and Russell Tovey, who have a sublime chemistry on stage together.It also feels like it is this pairing who have been able to play with the characters the most, making the most of the alternate realities. While some of the text adapts to accommodate the change of character, much of it actually remains in place, allowing both Manuel and Roland to explore the multiverse possibilities even further. Theatre Weekley
- In Douglas’s performance, the terror and need is wrapped within his signature floridness, making Tovey’s attempts to reach him extremely touching. Tovey proves that less is more in his own performance – so comic, but also so real. He is, and will be, bereft when the startling Douglas is gone, and he may well find the predictability of beehives is no longer enough for him. The Arts Desk
- And speaking of actors. What a job this must be for any thespian. Whilst we are sitting back watching, they have a marvellously complicated script that must have been a nightmare to learn. At points, the language of the scenes are so similar that everything relies on the way the lines are delivered and both actors have really nailed that aspect. Douglas brings a lovely campness to the role of Manuel. At points a stereotypical queen, at others just a boy in love, and at others a geeky lad connecting with the real world. Tovey’s Roland is the boy next door. A little shy, often quiet – especially when compared to Manuel – but then prone to bursts of over-the-top enthusiasm that take over as he loses all inhibitions leading to unexpected but very logical emotional outbursts. The two characters have real chemistry which makes the unlikely pairing of a beekeeper and quantum physicist feel real and understandable – talk about opposites attract. LondonTheatre1
- Omari Douglas, fresh from success in Channel 4’s It’s a Sin, plays Manuel as a vulnerable drama queen and Payne’s sharp, stinging dialogue suits his style perfectly. Russell Tovey’s “boring” Roland is the ideal foil for him and the actors’ timing of the quick fire comedy exchanges is impeccable. When the play is funny, this pair makes it very funny and, when it stops being funny, there appears a tender emotional bond, which is truly touching. The Reviews Hub
- However, for me, the out-and-out winner of this quartet is the pairing of Tovey and Douglas – the latter building on his superb work in recent TV hit It’s A Sin. Douglas makes the most radical choice with the academic character, here changed from Marianne to Emmanuel: instead of making him prickly and closed off, he uses that brilliance to be playful and flirtatious.There’s an immediate heat between the two men, even as they tease out that extra layer of whether the other man is queer; Tovey refers first to a wife, then a husband. The elbow-licking opening salvo has never seemed quite so sexy, and the honey exchange is given a simmering subtext, along with little touches and articulate body language that conveys so much more. Their first kiss is all smouldering intensity; the marriage proposal draws cheers and applause.
The sheer authenticity of that emotional connection raises the stakes of the whole play: you invest in them not just because you want this couple to beat the multiverse odds, but because you care about them wholeheartedly. And though of course our society has improved immeasurably when it comes to LBGTQ+ acceptance, there’s a slight sense of fragility – that it’s even more special when they find each other, and such happiness, and its potential loss is all the more tragic.
There’s also the most exciting variation here between each repeated scene, with both actors taking big swings – whether leaning into the darker conflict, including a moment of shocking violence, or revealing new shades of each character. The dancing sequence is a highlight, as is the sign language scene, and, later in the story, their wrestling against a terrible inevitability feels utterly human, and universal.
This experiment has been an absolute triumph. LondonTheatre
- Constellations stars Russell Tovey as Roland and Omari Douglas as Manuel, as two star-crossed lovers. These two actors are simply superb with exceptional execution of their respective stage craft to such a huge and well-honed degree. Written by Nick Payne, the dialogue is repeated over and over and by subtle changes in nuance and inflection we get a different mood, a contrasting message of what the characters are saying to each other. Here Payne also introduces layered conversation laced with pure comedy gold zingers and where Tovey in particular almost changes his voice to create a completely different persona, it brought the house down.Their individual stage presence is phenomenal with both of them completely in control of the pace and delivery of the dialogue. Constellations asks questions about propositions, loneliness and the need for companionship when dark thoughts enter your mind; the plays also discusses assisted suicide. With lighting by Lee Curran and magnificent directing by Michael Longhurst, at a flick of switch Tovey and Douglas give compelling and dynamic performances. It’s very clear – almost written in the stars – that their roles in Constellations are the hottest ticket right now in the West End. Boyz
- Tovey and Douglas are brimming with charisma and chemistry.This reviewer only saw the Tovey-Douglas production and not the Martin-O’Dowd version, but others have noted that the former is the sexier, funnier take of the two. Both men bring something different to the table: Tovey’s performance is grand, Douglas’ more intricate. Sparks fly when they’re together, with their physicality making the entire thing magnetic.
The result is a landmark of queer theatre, a triumph in storytelling. Despite the lofty concept, Constellations feels fun, fresh and heartening – mixing love, hate, comedy and tragedy with a deft touch. Pink News
Omari Douglas in West End debut!
Omari stars in Constellations at the Vaudeville Theatre by the Donmar Warehouse.
“This summer Nick Payne‘s beautiful and heart breaking romance CONSTELLATIONS is revived in the West End with a twist: four different casts take turns to journey through the multiverse and the infinite possibilities of a relationship; each refracting the play afresh. Starring Sheila Atim and Ivanno Jeremiah (18 June – 1 August), Peter Capaldi and Zoë Wanamaker (23 June – 24 July), Omari Douglas and Russell Tovey (30 July – 11 September), and Anna Maxwell Martin and Chris O’Dowd (6 August – 12 September).” The Donmar Warehouse
IT'S A SIN has received rave reviews and huge popular acclaim currently screening on Channel 4
- The play, directed by Joseph Winters, had a brief run two years ago and was due to be staged at London’s Trafalgar Studios in June. Produced by Roger James Elsgood and Stephen Daldry, this is, unusually, a Zoom rehearsal with actors reading their parts for the first time from a script. It is remarkable that the performances gel so well, however static the setup. Each actor is convincing in his part, although Douglas – who was cast in the same role two years ago – is narrowly the strongest of the three. The Guardian
Wise Children Reviews
Reviews for Omari’s performance in Wise Children at The Old Vic are in!
- “As Nora’s younger showgirl incarnation, Omari Douglas is sensational.” The Observer
- “Everyone is good, but special credit to Melissa James and Omari Douglas for holding so much of the show together as the showgirl Dora and Nora.” The Times
- “Omari Douglas and Melissa James are electrifying as the Chances in their showgirl heyday.” Evening Standard
- “The teenage “showgirl” iteration of the twins (played with an endearing vivacity by Melissa James and Omari Douglas) light up the auditorium.” WhatsOnStage
- “The Chance sisters themselves are beguilingly played at every age. Melissa James and Omari Douglas are the sultry backstage creatures on the way up.” Variety
- “Rice’s adaptation careens forwards on sheer brio, with the Chances played by one set of puppets and three pairs of actors “most notably, at their dancing peak, by Melissa James and Omari Douglas.” Time Out
- “Later the roles are taken up by willowy and well-paired Melissa James and Omari Douglas.” The Hollywood Reporter