Break their Lineage, Break their Roots… tells the real-life stories of Uyghur, Kazakh and other Turkic Muslims who have been accused of ‘three evils’ - namely, ‘separatism, extremism and terrorism’ - by the Chinese state. The first of its kind, the play adds new insights to their lives before and after periods of incarceration and torture in detention that the state describes as rehabilitation centres.
Based on interviews with Uyghur, Kazakh and other Turkic Muslims including Tursunay Ziyawudun, Abduweli Ayup, Qelbinur Sidik, Abduréhim Paraç and Uyghur Tribunal statements.
A letter, a song and a yearning heart.
John Lennon is not dead. He lives in another plane where he makes a pact with the Maharishi to get in touch with his wife, Yoko Ono.
Meanwhile, his friend from Rishikesh, Jolly Singh, discovers John’s package from 1968 that was never posted. It contains a tape. What’s on it? Should he take it to the rightful recipient?
Can his daughter, Dilwaar, help while following her dreams to migrate to England?
Set on a multiracial street somewhere in the UK, breaDth explores the grip of two interconnected viruses killing in the UK; COVID-19 and racial discrimination; and the importance of oxygen for our lungs and for life. Combining real with surreal situations during the COVID-19 pandemic., the play casts a kaleidoscopic lens on survival through prejudice, violence, racial inequality and the struggle for breath among Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic (BAME) communities and families, exacerbated by the pandemic.
The fictionalised experiences in this play are based on comprehensive research by the Consortium on Practices of Wellbeing and Resilience of BAME families and communities (Co-POWeR) and was co-developed with research participants across England and Wales.
Nabeel Ahmed always dreamed of Michelin stars and Celebrity-chef status but was never able to get anywhere beyond his lowly curry house in Bradford. His daughter Saira’s conversion to militant veganism spurs an idea for the world’s first fully sustainable, farm-to-table Indian restaurant in the Yorkshire countryside. But with Halal meat considered barbaric in her eyes, will the “Tandoor on the Moor” be enough to salvage their relationship?
Allah's Own Country was presented as an R&D performance within post-show Q&A with Kaamil Shah and members of Sohaya Visions and Mukul & Ghetto Tigers at Rich Mix in London on the 1st April 2022.
Inspired by their theatre production, TERROR, Sohaya Visions and Mukul & Ghetto Tigers launched a scriptwriting competition, RAFTA (Rise Against Fanaticism Through the Arts).
The competition was held in honour of the memory of Faraaz Ayaaz Hossain who received a posthumous award for his bravery against violent extremism on July 1st 2016 at the Holey Artian Bakery in Dhaka. The competition aims to tackle fanaticism in its various forms through the creative arts.
The RAFTA 2022 festival stages the winning play, ALLAH's OWN COUNTRY, by Kaamil Shah and includes online readings of 5 runner-ups and 10 scripts with commendations along with RAFTA Conversations with leading theatre experts, and the launch of darkmatter journal issue, GLOBAL BLACK LIVES MATTER.
We are part of the GRID heritage network, a UK-India network that explores Indian diasporic heritage using a framework informed by gender and intersectionality (GRID). The vision is to ensure that those discriminated along lines of gender, caste, class and/or ethnicity along with their heritage are fully appreciated, engaged and supported at the national and transnational level. The project team organised workshops for academics, researchers and practitioners along with linked exhibitions and musical performances in New Delhi and London. The work features an online exhibition of case studies and digitised archive.
When one in two people are likely to get cancer over their lifetime, knowing what to do and how to deal with it becomes all the more important.
BODIES is an experimental, multi-media psychodrama that combines tragedy with comedy, weaving ancient and contemporary stories about dilemmas of the body, mind and people's experiences with cancer.
An Indian devadasi – an expert in the 64 arts of the Kama Sutra – inadvertently becomes a time-traveller.
On her journeys, she meets the most unlikely people from England. There begins this comic caper with a nasty sting in the tale.
Kama Sci-Fi takes you on a ride with young lovers in ancient, present and future eras to develop a more holistic understanding of union.
Get set to imagine and encounter human relations in ways you had never thought before.
Let’s celebrates the poetry, songs and message of a great Bengali Baul from the nineteenth century, Lalon Shah. He stood for harmonious living against social orthodoxy and religious extremism - as relevant now as it was then.
This new drama cuts between pre-partition Bengal to contemporary Bangladesh where a woman, Luna, from Whitechapel, is visiting the Lalon Mela, a festival commemorating the legendary philosopher that is organized on the bank of river Kaliganga in Kushtia.
What follows blows her mind…and her heart.
What would you do if militants stormed a café while you were enjoying time out with friends and family? Young Faraaz Hossain faced this terrifying scenario at the Holey Artisan Bakery in Dhaka, Bangladesh on July 1st in 2016.
Faraaz's strength in the face of extremism has now been memorialised in the play ,'Terror'. Written by Raminder Kaur. Directed by Mukul Ahmed and designed by Erica Greenshields, Terror aims to honour Faraaz’s memory, while using the voices of customers and staff to retell the horrific incident which stunned those in Bangladesh and beyond.
Superheroes bring to mind caped crusaders such as Superman, Batman, or Captain America. The more gender attuned foreground Wonder Woman among other avatars. Those looking eastwards might highlight Japanese characters from Manga. But what about other intergalactic superhero/ines? How do other young people engage with illustrations, storytelling and imaginaries of superheroism?
With a focus on Doga, Skaktimaan, Nagraj, Super Commando Dhruva, Chandika and Shakti, this film by Raminder Kaur and Tarun Jasani explores superheroism from the viewpoints of young people in India.
Based on people's life stories and experiences, Bodies explores the many facets of cancer through word, song and psychodrama. When one in two people are likely to be diagnosed over their lifetime, cancer has become a silent epidemic of our era. Knowing how to deal with it, minimise recurrence, and share knowledge and experiences is all the more important. Bodies does this through both realism and surrealism, tragedy and comedy.
An unheard/unseen interviewer asks two female prisoners details of their life's journeys. Both describe the world they left behind, the future they face, and finally, the legacy they will leave for humanity…
A research and development theatre presentation that explores how a common seed planted in soils of sorrow and adversity can grow into a weed as well as bloom into a flower.
'That which holds you captivate can also set you free.'
Silent Sisters-Brothers Unhinged was developed out of memories and experiences of the partition of Bengal in 1947 and linked to Silent Sisters on the partition of Punjab, brought back due to popular demand to commemorate the 70th year. Now in their 70s, 80s and 90s, those who had lived through partition related what they went through in interviews and workshops in London, Brighton and Crawley. Younger generations talked about what their parents and relatives had told them. Discussions extended to refugees in general, violence against women, and migration. And others related to the subject through their own experiences of forcible displacement. From these fraught threads, these powerful dramas were born.
Artwork by Arpana Caur, Sohni Mahiwal, 48 X 60 inches, oil on canvas, 2008
Who doesn’t harbour secrets? Mishti Gals (sweet swearing in Bengali) tells the funny, poignant and scorching story of the lives of three British Bengali women. Frenemies in their 40s, they have all made life choices that defy expectation. A repressed lecturer called Shubarna, a shopaholic city worker, Lata, and a brazen media socialite, Mou, live in the fast changing landscape of E1. None of them are married with the obligatory 2.2 children. Instead, against all the odds, they make merry and blaze other paths - some hilarious, and some back-stabbingly serious.
Welcome to the real east end!
Silent Sisters is based on real-life stories and memories of partition and migration among British Asians who were affected by the drawing of a line between India and Pakistan in 1947. The youngest interviewed was 21, the oldest 91. With poetry, song, music and movement, Silent Sisters is a fictional story in tribute to those who were affected by partition, and to those who struggle with violence and displacement across the world today which according to the UNHCR, amount to over 65 million people.