I Am Jerusalem

Thousands of great stories that formed humanity’s imagination up until now, has been erased, forged or appropriated. The continuous occupation of Jerusalem turned it into a battered spirit. I Am Jerusalem gives the city a voice to talk about the atrocities it lived throughout history, embodied in a form of a woman presenting all her stories. This play has sparked a large debate over the issues dealing with the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. The play in itself, however, is not political in nature. It is a love story and the intention of it is to highlight the plight of the Palestinians, both under occupation & those who are refugees and have lives abroad. The protagonists, Joumana and Rami have to decide between living their romantic Western fantasy or staying in their homes and country. On the other hand, we have Lama and Ali, a Palestinian couple who settle for the life they live. They find love in each other, which is not ideal, but realistic and heart-warming. It shows the difference between sticking to one’s roots and finding a safer and romantic way of living as reflected in both Jomana & Rami’s relationship and Lama & Ali’s relationships as well. Samah once mentioned also that Joumana’s romantic dilemma represents the metaphor of Palestinians who dream of being reunited with their homes and lands that they were forced to leave.

Hamlet Machine

Hamlet Machine, written by Heiner Müller in 1977, was adapted by Ayham Majid Agha in 2018. The Exile Ensemble, of which Ayham serves as Artistic Director, has been part of the Maxim Gorki Theatre in Berlin since the 2016/17 season. The ensemble’s seven actors are investigating the original texts alongside Ayham’s adaptation, as well as researching their own positions in an open ended project. With Hamlet Machine, they’re pursuing the dramatist who radically questions the intellectual’s position in a world that is out of joint, dissecting Shakespeare, among others, and then putting the remaining fragments together again.

Skeleton of an Elephant in the Desert

Skeleton of an Elephant in the Desert focuses on loneliness and murder. It’s about four characters in a destroyed city, about a circus on the frontlines of battles, about unmarked and un-murdered corpses, about a sniper postponing the death of a nurse, about who is documenting the incidents, and about the last witness.


Dushka is a dynamic play performed by five Syrian actresses, which tries to showcase the mechanisms of building dictatorships- the dictatorship of the ruler, the father, money, and every other controlling authority- and how we become their victim, because we did not resist it from the very beginning of its formation, and we have stood up to those who are trying to resist it.

Baghdadi Bath

Baghdadi Bath depicts two Iraqi brothers as they struggle to survive in Iraq, both before and during the 2003 US-led invasion and ensuing occupation. The brothers wash and quarrel in the Turkish-style bathhouse that serves as the setting for much of the play. The two are, as it were, mired in filth, corrupted by their engagement as bus drivers with both Saddam’s thugs and American soldiers. They narrate atrocities in turn. The younger, Hamiid, is complicit in transporting political prisoners to their deaths by firing squad under Saddam’s regime and then relaying their corpses to a mass gravesite. Hamiid is confined in a military hospital for a month and refused payment for his services. In the final episode of the play, Majiid suffers at the hands of American soldiers after the two attempt to transport a political candidate from Amman, Jordan to Baghdad. Just after they cross the border back into Iraq, an exploding cigar kills the candidate. Trapped in a battle zone, Majiid buries the remains, but is then forced to unearth them at the command of American soldiers, [who later push him into the grave and cover him with dust. The play ends with Hamiid carrying Majiid to the shower and bathing him.]

Romeo and Juliet in Baghdad

Romeo and Juliet in Baghdad is an Arabic adaptation of Shakespeare’s play. It starts with two brothers (Sunni Capulet and Shiite Montague) fighting over a ship their father had left them. Romeo and Juliet are young adults who had been in love for nine years. Juliet’s father wants to marry his daughter to one of Mujahideen who came to Iraq to fight the occupation. The feuding families prohibit inter-sectarian marriage and keep Romeo and Juliet apart. The second-oldest brother and his children live in poverty even as their labor enriches the oldest brother . With the passage of time, the conflict between the two brothers escalates and the enmity becomes stronger. Despite the objection of both parents, Romeo and Juliet decide to marry secretly in Al-Najat Church. Their decision is encouraged by their history teacher, who emphasises that inter-sectarian marriages  continue to occur in Iraq despite the eruption of sectarian violence. In a fight, Romeo shoots Juliet’s brother dead. The play ends as both lovers are killed as the result of a suicide attack on Al-Najat Church. 

The Widow

Samir, an outspoken young professor of English drama in post-Saddam Iraq, has an affair with his favorite student, Nour. She is a widow whose husband was a general in Saddam’s army and was killed in the First Gulf War in 1991. Samir flees Iraq for Canada to escape sectarian retaliation for his liberal views, leaving Nour dealing with the consequences of her pregnancy. Samir’s mother helps Nour abort the child. Samir, a jobless refugee in Canada, struggles to make sense of his life, and thus returns to Nour in Iraq despite his family’s warnings. Samir proposes to Nour on the banks of the Shatt al-Arab, a popular meeting place in Basra. A car with two gunmen pulls over and they shoot Samir dead. The play ends as Samir’s mother silently joins Nour on stage.

A Distinct Society

A quiet library that straddles the border of the U.S. and Canada becomes an unlikely crucible for five people from around the world. When an Iranian family, separated from one another by the “Muslim ban,” use the library as a meeting place, the head librarian, a U.S. border patrol officer, and a local teenager have to choose between breaking the law and saving themselves.


The play Hair gives a panoramic view of hair as a political statement through the monologues of nine characters from different cultures, ethnicities, colours, ages and sexualities It aims to bring to light the objectification of women through the commercial use of hair, through the heritage of fairy tales which transfer the ownership of the female body and hair to the man, and by examining the voyeurism projected towards hair. It also employs irony in some monologues, movement and dance. In one of the nine monologues, Hair speaks for itself and reveals many taboos about itself. There we can easily see Hair as a symbol of the unspoken oppression and dehumanization imposed on women and people of color. Another monologue is the voice of pubic hair, where we can also confront a tradition of patriarchy that enslaves, mutes, and infantilizes female sexuality.

Drowning in Cairo

Drowning in Cairo follows the lives of three Egyptian gay men from different walks of life, whose fate forces them together time and again over a 20 year period. The play is set between 1997 and 2017 as Moody, Khalid and Taha age from 13 to 33 and the political system and queer life transform around them. In eleven episodic scenes, Drowning in Cairo chronicles the contemporary history of the queer community’s relationship to the law and public space in Egypt.