I was part of Dubai's theatre community for the two and half years I lived in the United Arab Emirates and made many friends there. It was great to reconnect…
As I’m writing this, I hear that Bruce added ‘The Ghost of Tom Joad’ to his Broadway show, in protest at the inhumane treatment at US Borders. This was the first set change for 146 shows and was warmly received by the audience.
I look at my Twitter feed and learn that MSNBC newsreader Rachel Maddow broke down on air whilst describing the forcible separation of babies and young children from their migrant parents at the US-Mexico border and the use of ‘tender age shelters’ by officials of the Trump administration.
Making light of my own immigration ‘inconvenience’ in no way diminishes how I feel about this disgraceful treatment of families and children – or the subsequent inadequate statements by the Trump administration in the face of international condemnation.
‘And what is your reason for visiting the United States?’
Welcome to immigration at Newark Liberty Airport. Obvious irony alert in the name but let that pass. After two merciless hours in a queue, the question comes as a blessed relief. It’s the one I’ve been waiting for.
‘Yeah, it was really good fun.’ I quote Tim, the erstwhile ‘non-actor’ among us, after making his highly effective stage debut in Dubai at the biggest ten-minute play festival in the world. Turns out he’d love to do it all over again. Just one of the unexpectedly wonderful things that came out of writing, directing and performing at this year’s Short +Sweet Festival of Theatre. (more…)
It’s a year since we started our expat adventure in Dubai and in keeping with my general aim of making the most of this fast moving experience, I will be making my entrance on the Dubai stage in the Short and Sweet festival this weekend.
Short and Sweet is the largest festival of ten minute plays in the world and the buzz around it is really exciting. Over six weeks, talented writers, directors and actors will present more than 80 bite-sized plays to packed houses and much applause. (more…)
Is it a play or is it a film? That is the question. Or certainly that was the one I was asking as we took our seats at Dubai’s Courtyard Playhouse.
We were here for a National Theatre Live screening of The Audience, Peter Morgan’s award- winning play, starring theatrical royalty, Dame Helen Mirren. I’d always wondered whether seeing a broadcast of a play on a cinema screen counts as a true theatrical experience but given that the West End of London is a bit out of reach right now, this seemed a good moment to find out how it all worked. (more…)
If ever there was a case of less is more, then the concept of the ten-minute play must be a worthy contender. I say this as one who has sat, without complaint, through her fair share of three–act dramas whilst those around me grow ever more restless in their seats, hoping in vain for an early release back into the free world.
Dubai’s Short and Sweet Festival of Theatre is the antidote to all that. A menu of varied theatrical nuggets, freshly crafted and energetically presented is a winning way to keep an audience involved and alert. If you don’t like this play, chill out – there’ll be another one along in a few minutes. (more…)
I’m beginning to think that everyone should be plucked from everything and everyone they know and dropped in a new location at least once in their lives. The disruption really makes you think about who you are and what makes you tick. Exchanging predictable outcomes for a life lived in the moment is challenging but like most things worth doing, the more you put into it, the greater the gain. (more…)