Riverside Theatres, Merrigong Theatre Company And Arts Projects Australia Presents
A lyrical story of the life of Palestinian poet Taha Muhammad
Direct from The Young Vic London, Edinburgh and Adelaide Festivals, author and performer Amer Hlehel tours his exquisite play TAHA exclusively to the Shoalhaven Entertainment Centre, the Illawarra Performing Arts Centre (IPAC) and Riverside Theatres (Parramatta) throughout March.
TAHA tells the compelling and sometimes heart breaking story of celebrated Palestinian poet, Taha Muhammad Ali (1931-2011), whose poetry detailed the experience of Palestinian refugees. Adapted from Adina Hoffman’s biography My Happiness Bears No Relation to Happiness, TAHA is directed by award-winning writer and director, Amir Nizar Zuabi.
Written and performed by Hlehel, TAHA delves into the story of how, against all the odds, a humble, engaging man evolved into a renowned Palestinian writer.
Hlehel creates the life of Taha Muhammed Ali as a young man, determined to overcome the poverty of life in his village. His early years of optimism and entrepreneurship are cut short when his village is bombed in 1948. The audience are taken on a journey as Taha and his family flee to refugee camps in Lebanon.
Hlehel said, “I discovered that Taha’s story is our story - the story of people who were displaced and lost their homeland and their lives and their nature. Taha wrote the finest poetry about his experience. It was personal, deep and tender and it gave me the ability to write a play that was larger than a single life in terms of the history and how we deal with it as human beings.”
Performed in English, there will be two special performances held at IPAC and Riverside Theatres presented entirely in Arabic, the native language of the writer and performer. A must-see show this March, TAHA powerfully communicates the universal sorrow, humour, resilience and tender humanity of this extraordinary man and artist.
Written and performed by: Amer Hlehel Translated and directed by Amir Nizar Zuabi Design Ashraf Hanna Composer and Sound Design Habib Shehadeh Hanna Lighting Muaz Jubeh Production Manager Khawla Ibraheem.
Arabic Performance - Director Yussuf Abu Warda Lighting Firas Tarabshi