Striking the Balance: A conversation with MENASA Theatre Artists working in non-traditional styles

This panel convenes four artists who are working at the intersection of traditional narrative with performance art and puts them in conversation about the past, present, and future of non-traditional Middle Eastern, North African, and South Asian storytelling.

October 27 @ 5:30PM

Panelist card of Avi Amon

Avi Amon is a Turkish-American composer, sound artist, and educator. Recent credits include: THE COPPER CHILDREN (Oregon Shakespeare Festival), STEW (SoHo Rep/Page 73), THE FISHERMAN (HBO Films), THE BLACK HISTORY MUSEUM with Zoey Martinson (HERE Arts Center), WE WERE EVERYWHERE with Shariffa Ali (Princeton), SALONIKA (Berkeley REP) and THE WHITE CITY with Julia Gytri (Yale Institute, O’Neill NMTC), RATED BLACK with Kareem Lucas (New York Theater Workshop). His sound installations in a 100-year old grain silo with Buffalo, NY-based Torn Space Theater were featured at the 2019 Prague Quadrennial. In development: INSHALLAH/MASHALLAH: a 3-D-audio opera re-imagining of the 1,001 Nights (Target Margin Theater), and scores for several films. He is a Jonathan Larson Grant and New Music USA Grant winner, a Dramatists Guild Fellow, and has been in-residence with Exploring the Metropolis at JCAL, Hi-ARTS, Judson, New Dramatists, and Weston Playhouse. Avi is the resident composer at the 52nd Street Project and teaches a variety of collaborative art-making courses at NYU Tisch.

Panelist card for Kareem Fahmy

Kareem Fahmy is a Canadian-born playwright and director of Egyptian descent and is currently a TCG Rising Leader of Color. His plays, which include A Distinct Society, The Triumphant, Pareidolia, The In-Between, and an adaptation of the acclaimed Egyptian novel The Yacoubian Building, have been developed at theatres across the country. Fellowships/Residencies: Sundance Theatre Lab, Oregon Shakespeare Festival (Phil Killian Directing Fellow), Eugene O’Neill Theatre Center (National Directors Fellow), Second Stage (Van Lier Directing Fellow), Soho Rep (Writer/Director Lab), Lincoln Center (Directors Lab), New York Theater Workshop (Emerging Artist Fellow & Usual Suspect). Kareem has directed new work at MCC, The New Group, The Atlantic, Ensemble Studio Theatre, New Dramatists, The Civilians, Geva Theatre, Pioneer Theatre, Silk Road Rising, Berkeley Rep, and many others. Kareem is the co-founder of the Middle Eastern American Writers Lab at The Lark and of Maia Directors, a consulting group for organizations and artists engaging with stories from the Middle East and beyond. MFA: Columbia University.

Mariam Bazeed is a nonbinary Egyptian immigrant, writer, performer, and cook living in a rent-stabilized apartment in Brooklyn. An alliteration-leaning writer of prose, poetry, plays, and personal essays, Mariam received an MFA in Fiction from Hunter College in 2018. They are currently at work on their first book of poetry, their second full-length play, faggy faafi Cairo boy; and with poet Kamelya Omayma Youssef on Kilo Batra: In Death More Radiant [working title], a play commission by Detroit-based experimental theater company, A Host of People, written in three columns and two languages, and scheduled to premiere at the Arab American National Museum. To procrastinate from facing the blank page, Mariam curates and runs a monthly(ish) world-music salon and open mic in Brooklyn, and is a slow student of Arabic music.

Moe Yousuf is a South Asian American theater artist who plays the great highland bagpipes in his performance work. He is the Associate Artistic Director of Target Margin Theater in Sunset Park, Brooklyn, where he co-curates season programming and creates performance works including his recent productions News of the Strange (2019) and Yogibogeybox (2018). Moe has shown / developed work with the The Foundry Theater, Abrons Arts Center, NYC Prelude Festivals, The Bushwick Starr, The Tank, LaGuardia Performing Arts Center’s Rough Draft Festival, the New York Public Library, and he is a as co-curator of the performance series “Little Theatre” at Dixon Place. In addition, Moe has over 10 years of experience as an Arts Worker in NYC and has worked as a consultant with Henry Street Settlement and SPACE on Ryder Farm. He is on the Board of the Alliance of Resident Theaters of New York (ART/NY), where he co-chair the Anti-Racism Committee, and he has sat on advisory panels for the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs, HERE Arts Center, Theatre Row, and Silk Road Rising.