Showing posts with label Arabic Theatre. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Arabic Theatre. Show all posts

Thursday, August 6, 2015

4 Short Plays from Arabian Shakespeare Festival on Aug 8 (SF)

The Arabian Shakespeare Festival is presenting 4 Short Plays created with inspiration from one of Shakespeare's Sonnets or the Poetry of Sidi Abderrahman el Mejdub and Abeliziz Al Magrouhi (arab poets from the same period). Actors and directors will put the play up with well under 10 hours of rehearsal!

New works written by Barry Eitel, Elmaz Abinader, David Graham and Deema Shehabi.

For more info and tickets, see

Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Silk Road Rising Receives ArtPlace America Grant

Silk Road Rising has been awarded ArtPlace America’s National Grant to support their civic engagement and new play project, Jamil Khoury's Mosque Alert! Silk Road Rising (formerly known as Silk Road Theatre Project) creates live theatre and online videos that tell stories through primarily Asian American and Middle Eastern American lenses. In representing communities that intersect and overlap, they aim to advance a polycultural worldview.

Mosque Alert is an artistic and civic engagement project that dramatizes the difficulties Muslims face across the country (see  Last summer, Jamil Khoury and Malik Gillani—the founders of Silk Road Rising—found the ideal site for their fictional mosque: The Old Nichols Library in downtown Naperville. Working with ten community partners in downtown Naperville, they plan to use Mosque Alert to generate community-wide conversations that will examine fears associated with the building of this fictional mosque.

The project also utilizes video plays, community discussions and live stage work. The final artwork will be a production of Mosque Alert at Naperville’s North Central College in Fall, 2016. The stage play will integrate comments and feedback gathered from upcoming community engagement programs. 

Silk Road Rising has been working in Naperville for the past two years on the theme of Muslim American integration. This video, by Naperville Community Television 17 (NCTV17), documents one of their most recent presentations at the Naperville Public Library. You can also read this article by Susan Frick Carlman of The Naperville Sun, discussing one of the presentations we recently conducted in Naperville.

You can watch the video below or at

ReOrient Forum & Festival 2015

Golden Thread’s upcoming ReOrient Festival in San Francisco is well known for innovative, spirited, and thought-provoking theatre from and about the Middle East. With short plays by playwrights from Iraq, Iran, Egypt, England, and the U.S., the latest ReOrient promises to be a one-of-a-kind exploration of this unique region and its theater, stories, and artists.

The festival will feature 8 short plays by leading and emerging Middle Eastern writers (see below). The month-long festival of short plays, which will begin on September 10, 2015, will conclude with a FREE weekend Forum, a convening of artists, activists and scholars aimed at expanding the dialogue on theatre and the Middle East .


by Hassan Abdulrazzak, directed by Michael French

When a Lebanese-American FBI agent is called in to interrogate a fallen dictator, a twisted tango ensues that complicates black and white notions of good and evil.

by Yussef El Guindi, directed by Evren Odcikin

Hisham, an archeologist, discovers an ancient perfume bottle in a war zone. As he digs deeper, his poet wife Nisrin questions if it’s worth risking his life for history.

by Emma Goldman-Sherman, directed by Erin Gilley

Life goes on for Mr. Hattab and a colorful cast of characters from his bustling Baghdad neighborhood despite a bomb going off in front of his grocery store.

by Hannah Khalil, directed by Manijeh Mohamedi

Maha’s Palestinian family shares their East Jerusalem apartment with an Israeli family, until a surprising letter changes everything—or does it?

by Ken Kaissar, directed by Evren Odcikin

Can a ceasefire allow Israeli and Lebanese soldiers patrolling the border to see each other as something other than enemy?

THE HOUSE (World Premiere)
by Tala Manassah and Mona Mansour, directed by Sara Razavi

Kamal, a Palestinian-American scientist, and his philosopher daughter Alia put on a play and take an imaginary trip to his childhood home.

When: September 10- October 4th

More Information:


The month-long festival of short plays will conclude with a FREE weekend Forum, a convening of artists, activists and scholars aimed at expanding the dialogue on theatre and the Middle East .

This year, Golden Thread presents Theatre Between Home & Exile, a panel exploring the ideas of home and language for Palestinian theatre artists around the world. Panelists include Palestinian-American playwright and activist, Ismail Khalidi, University of Haifa’s theatre professor and professional Massoud Haman and Ramallah based, emerging playwright Dalia Taha.

Panel: “Theatre Between Home and Exile: New Palestinian Voices” (Oct 3)

Panelists: Massoud Hamdan (Israel), Yasser Abu Shaqra (Syria/Turkey), Hannah Kahlil (UK),
Ismail Khalidi (USA), Dalia Taha (West Bank, OPT)

This panel will bring five unique voices in Palestinian theatre together to discuss the complexity of telling Palestinian stories at home and abroad. The panelists will explore various identities and voices that make up Palestinian identity in the face of globalization.

Concert: ReImagined Folk Songs with Saosan Jarjour (October 4, 2:30 PM)

An afternoon of Syrian folk songs with award-winning Syrian American soprano, Saousan Jarjour.

For more info see

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

My Interview with BABA Star Denmo Ibrahim

Interview with Denmo Ibrahim in April 2014

My interview with Denmo Ibrahim (listen below) who stars in the play BABA where she literally transforms herself into an immigrant Egyptian father who will make you laugh and cry.  Play runs April 4-27, 2014 at AlterTheater Ensemble in San Rafael, California.

Sunday, April 6, 2014

Denmo Ibrahim's 'BABA' Premieres in San Rafael, CA (April 4-27, 2014)

An Egyptian immigrant’s search for American dream Premieres at AlterTheater

For info see
AlterTheater’s 10th season continues with the world premiere of BABA, written and performed by Denmo Ibrahim. BABA was developed within AlterLab, AlterTheater’s playwright residency program.

In April of 2014, AlterTheater is producing BABA, written and performed by Denmo Ibrahim. The highly anticipated world premiere of this piece comes after workshops at AlterTheater and across the country, including at Noor’s Highlight Series in New York City. Developed as a solo show, BABA spans 30 years and two continents and tells the story of an Egyptian immigrant to New York, his American-born daughter, and their search for the American dream. “This is a classic, all-American story of the immigrant hoping for a better life,” says LitComm member Patricia Silver. “Denmo’s wit, her poetic language and her empathy for her characters make her stories both touching and funny.”

Denmo Ibrahim (left) and Denmo as Baba (right)

Denmo is the co-founder of the award-winning San Francisco alternative performance group Mugwumpin, as well as a writer and performer. Her work with AlterTheater has been supported by a National Endowment for the Arts grant. She is the past recipient of a Theatre Bay Area New Works Fund grant, in support of her play, Ecstasy: A Water Fable, which premiered at Golden Thread Productions. “I’ve always been a huge fan of Denmo’s work,” says AlterTheater co-founder Jeanette Harrison. “As a performer she is so emotionally grounded and so physically specific that she just draws the audience right in to the life of her characters.”

Joining Denmo on the creative team for BABA are director Sara Razavi, who works frequently at Golden Thread Productions and who focuses on solo performances, and dramaturg Jayne Wenger, who most recently directed and dramaturged Margo Gomez’s new solo piece at the Marsh in San Francisco.

Denmo Ibrahim holds an MFA in Actor-Created Physical Theatre from Naropa University and a BFA in Acting from Boston University. She has performed for A.C.T, Aurora Theatre, Huntington Theatre, and the Vineyard Playhouse to name a few. Denmo has been nominated for an Irene Ryan Acting Award and a Joseph Jefferson Award for “Best Actress in a Lead Role”. As a playwright, she was the winner of the 2011 Highlight Series produced by Noor Theatre and New York Theatre Workshop and was selected as an Honoree for the Middle East Initiative Award. She is a founding Artistic Director of Mugwumpin, an award-winning performance group based in San Francisco. To date, Denmo has co-created seven ensemble based performances and written two full-length plays. Her plays include Ecstasy I a water fable -- a two-year Theatre Bay Area commission produced by Golden Thread, andBaba, a riveting solo performance exploring Middle Eastern identity that workshopped throughout the U.S to sold-out houses, including a one-night engagement at AlterTheater (under the title FUNNY, a trunk show). Denmo is the founder and CEO of Earthbody, an organic day spa for healing -- voted Best Day Spa by SF Weekly and CitySearch. She also formulates an organic bodycare line inspired by the principles of Ayurveda. In addition to running a successful business, Denmo is an educator, therapist, writer and Holistic Coach. She is personally committed to acts of love, the power of art, and the wisdom of transformation.

Sara Razavi graduated from UC Davis with a degree in sociology and theatre studies. In addition to her training at Davis, her theatre training involves a year-long theatre focus at University of Birmingham, in England. She was one of the founding members of elastic future an experimental multi-disciplinary arts group working in theatre, film / video, and other live performance, with whom she has collaborated on several ensemble generated works. She is regular performer and active Board Member of Golden Thread Production, a theatre company focused on exploring Middle Eastern cultures and identities. Razavi focuses on supporting actors develop their one-person productions. Recently, she has directed Maryam Rostami’s one-woman show, Persepolis, Texas for CounterPULSE Theatre’s Summer Special Program, and Denmo Ibrahim’s BABA for Minneapolis Fringe Festival. Razavi has also been involved with other Bay Area theatre companies including Shotgun Players, TheatreFIRST, Darvag, and New Conservatory Theatre Company. Razavi lives in San Francisco, where in addition to her theatre work, she recently completed her MBA, and works at Working Solutions, a microlender which provides capital and support to small business owners.

Jayne Wenger is a director and dramaturg whose exclusive focus is on original material. She is the past Artistic Director of the Bay Area Playwrights Foundation and was the Artistic Director of Women’s Ensemble in New York. She has developed the emerging work of acclaimed playwrights throughout the country including David Adjmi, Kate Bornstein, Clarence Coo, Chris Chen, Nilo Cruz, Sara Felder (JuneBride and Shtick! both touring shows), Dan Hoyle, Holly Hughes, Naomi Iizuka, Sherry Kramer, Schatzie Schaefers and Liebe Wetzel’s Lunatique Fantastique and Lauren Yee. She has collaborated with Claire Chafee on numerous projects, including the original direction of the world premiere of Why We Have a Body at the Magic Theatre in San Francisco. Her work has been recognized with many awards. Current work: Dramaturgy for Marga Gomez’ Love Birds (The Marsh San Francisco and La Mama NYC), direction and dramaturgy for Come to me Leopards, (Cyrano’s Theater, Anchorage, Alaska) dramaturgy for Arlitia Jone’s Rush at Everlasting(Perseverance Theater, Juneau, Alaska) and dramaturgy for Deke Weaver’s Wolf, part of The Unreliable Bestiary Project (University of Illinois, Urbana, Champaign). Recent projects include Michelle Carter’s 20 Friends at 3 Girls, Becoming Grace by Naomi Newman for A Traveling Jewish Theater; Michelle Carter’s How To Pray for Crowded Fire; Claire Chafee’s FULL/SELF for The Playwrights Foundation; Anne Galjour’s You Can’t Get There From Here for Z Space and Dartmouth College and Men Think They Are Better Than Grass with the Deborah Slater Dance Theater. Jayne is an AlterTheater associate artist and a member of The Dramatists Guild, Literary Managers and Dramaturgs of the Americas, League of Professional Theater Women, and serves on the Advisory Board of Last Frontier Theatre Conference.

AlterTheater works the opposite of the movies: discount tickets are available when our plays first open. We work to make sure all members of our community can come together to share stories.

Our ensemble includes the Bay Area’s best established and emerging artists.

We believe the world can change for the better when artists dream big, take risks, and push themselves to the limits of their imagination….and then take another step.

AlterTheater temporarily transforms storefronts along the downtown San Rafael pedestrian shopping district into performance spaces: it’s theater you can window shop!

Written & performed by Denmo Ibrahim
Directed by Sara Razavi
Dramturgy by Jayne Wenger

Previews begin April 4th
Press Opening: April 5th at 8 pm

What: In this new comedy from celebrated physical performer Denmo Ibrahim, freedom and family collide when an Egyptian immigrant’s search for the American dream leads his American-born daughter on a quest for home.

April 4th to April 27th
Saturdays at 3 pm & 8 pm
Sundays at 3 pm
Plus: Friday, 4/4 at 8 pm & Tuesday, 4/8 at 8 pm.

Friday, April 4th at 8 pm PREVIEW
Saturday, April 5th at 3 pm PREVIEW
Saturday, April 5th at 8 pm OPENING
Sunday, April 6th at 3 pm++
Tuesday, April 8th at 8 pm*
Saturday, April 12th at 3 pm++
Saturday, April 13th at 8 pm
Sunday, April 14th at 3 pm
Saturday, April 19th at 3 pm
Saturday, April 19th at 8 pm
Sunday, April 20th at 3 pm
Saturday, April 26th at 3 pm
Saturday, April 26th at 8 pm
Sunday, April 27th at 3 pm CLOSING

*Choose Your Own Price (pay-what-you-can) night
++Senior Matinee

Ticket information:
Individual tickets are $25, or less during the first two weeks of performances, Featured discounts include Choose-Your-Own-Price Night, Senior Discount Day, and more, some of which are only available online.

West Coast Arts/West End Studio
1554 Fourth Street (behind United Liquors, between E & F Streets), San Rafael

Monday, November 12, 2012

Nov 8 'Arabology' Podcast Ft Interview with Torange Yeghiazarian, Artistic Director of 'ReOrient Festival of Short Plays' in San Francisco

The sixth episode of the 3rd Season of 'Arabology' (aired Nov 8, 2012) includes an interview with Torange Yeghiazarian, Founding Artistic Director of Golden Thread Productions which is currently staging the ReOrient Festival of Short Plays in San Francisco (in English) which explore the Middle East from November 1–18, 2012. Also includes alternative music from the Arab world accompanied by commentary, in English, by your host DJ Ramzi.

R. Salti (left) with Torange Yeghiazarian at Stanford

Playlist for Arabology Thursday, 8 November 2012 3pm - 5pm DJ: Ramzi S.
Artist/ Track/ Album/ Label
1. El Khalil, Omeima/ Ya Helou/ Ya/ Forward Music
2. Egyptian Project/ Anta Ana/ Paleo Festival Village Du Monde 2012/ Disques Office
3. Samsa/ Nsima (Breath Of Life)/ Alem Jdid (New World)/ Skander Guetari
4. Interview with Torange Yeghiazarian (25 min)/ Arabology/ KZSU
5. Maraka, Aziz/ Ibki (Live)/ Master Copy/ Cd Baby
6. Soultan, Ahmed/ Itim/ Arabic Beat/ Putumayo World Music
7. Ajram, Nancy/ Ya Banat / Super Nancy/ Emi
8. Slimani, Ali/ Lirah/ Arabic Beat/ Putumayo World Music
9. Pangia/ Turkish Delight- 9/8 Drum Solo/ West Of East Vol. 5/ Pangia Vol 5
10. El Mansoury, Hiba / Rima/ Sah El Nom/ Murr Television Lebanon
11. Abu Ghazaleh, Tamer/ 7ob/ Mir'ah/ eka3
12. Aburedwan, Ramzi/ Raja (Return)/ Reflections/ Riverboat Records
13. Broukar/ Mawal/ Paleo Festival Village Du Monde 2012/ Disques Office
14. El Khalil, Omeima/ Ouhibbouka Akthar/ Ya/ Forward Music
15. Khalife, Marcel And Mahmoud Darwish In Damascus/Suqut Al-Qamar/ Nagam Records, Inc.
16. Mashrou' Leila/ Imm El Jacket/ El Hal Romancy/ Mashrou' Leila
17. Zeid & The Wings/ Aasfeh/ Zeid & The Wings/Lebanese Underground

Ramzi Salti's Talk: Healing through Lebanese Music (EPIC Fellows, Stanford Global Studies, September 2020)

Watch full talk at This audio-visual talk by Stanford Lecturer + Arabology program host Dr. Ramzi Salti was pre...