About Prentice Onayemi

Prentice Onayemi’s lyrical style and selective narration choices have quickly set him apart as a major talent in the audiobook world. Among his best loved performances are all of author Paul Beatty’s audiobooks, including The Sellout, which won a Man Booker Prize and earned Onayemi recognition as an Audie Award finalist for Best Fiction narrator.

Onayemi is drawn to interesting narration projects and promising literary debuts. In 2016, he performed Imbolo Mbue’s acclaimed debut novel Behold the Dreamers about a young Cameroonian couple making ends meet in New York when the 2008 recession hits. The same year, he was in the award-winning multi-cast performance of Christodora, a debut novel by Tim Murphy featuring an eclectic mix of characters in Manhattan’s East Village. More recently, he performed 2017’s Beasts Made of Night by debut author Tochi Onyebuchi, a Nigerian-influenced fantasy about a 17-year-old with dark magical powers. Prentice Onayemi’s performances are praised as vivid, haunting, and able to depict different cultural worlds within a single story.

Before he started performing audiobooks, Prentice Onayemi first found voice-over work narrating English language learning programs. He holds a BFA in Drama from NYU and has also become known for his performances in downtown NYC passion projects and Broadway mainstays. On the screen, you might have seen him in the hit series House of Cards.

Onayemi’s creative pursuits dovetail with his business ventures. A graduate of Columbia University’s MBA program, he’s co-founded a performing arts venue in Brooklyn, NY, and a nonprofit that develops creative self-expression workshops for survivors of armed conflicts and natural disasters. He has also worked on research studies and policy recommendations to develop the performing arts in Queens, NY, and has co-authored case studies about artists as social entrepreneurs for Harvard Business Review. His latest project is Grains of Salt, an organization that helps creatives strike a balance between art and contributing to societal development.

Listener Favorites

Performance Highlights

  • Behold the Dreamers (Oprah's Book Club)
  • The Sellout
  • Power & Beauty