Quotes: MENA   Enter Symbol: NewsLetter: Search: advanced

Pak-American playwright finds his groove  Join our daily free Newsletter

MENAFN - Arab News - 14/06/2014
No. of Ratings : 0
Add to Mixx!


(MENAFN - Arab News) In a sun-splashed rehearsal room recently at lincoln center the knives were out for ayad akhtar's new play.

its four-person cast and director were running through 'the who & the what" and it was agonizing start-and-stop stuff. virtually every line was picked apart.

the most surprising thing was that the person with the sharpest knife was akhtar himself the author of 'american dervish" and the newly crowned pulitzer prize drama winner.

an actor stopped a scene to say he thought another character actually wouldn't do something in the script. 'we'll see. we could cut it" akhtar replied genially.

at another point the playwright took a line cut from an earlier moment and resurrected it welding it into another scene. he also sliced four lines from a character explaining 'we've heard that 400 times already" and later stopped the run-through to admit that the sequence he wrote wasn't working.

'guys i'm sorry" he said. 'thank you for rolling with it."

most playwrights wouldn't be so keen to wield a scalpel to their own work but akhtar one of theater's most vibrant exciting young writers is not precious about it.

'i don't experience it in my body until actors are doing it" he says. 'their human flow is something i can only know fully when they start doing it. they give me feedback through the doing. sometimes they give me feedback from the inside that i can't even know."

akhtar a pakistani-american has found rich material in the fault lines between east and west and his new play is no exception.

'the who & the what" centers on an asian writer whose potentially shocking novel about women threatens to tear her family apart.



it's a thought-provoking work one that smashes together references to 'big love".

'this play would start riots in some countries even though it's a very loving play ultimately and in an odd way very respectful" akhtar says. 'so many muslims will not agree with what i'm doing and others will."

the play marks the fourth time the playwright has collaborated with director kimberly senior and the pair have become fast friends who now share a secret language and push each other.

'both of us have this tremendous fear of making boring theater" senior says. 'every decision we're making is about keeping tension alive and keeping the action of the play moving forward."

akhtar 43 is these days like his plays — moving ever forward. in addition to 'the who & the what" which opens this month at lincoln center theater he's reworking his play 'the invisible hand" for the new york theater workshop this fall which is when his play 'disgraced" hits broadway. this winter he's due in berlin to finish writing another book. oh and there's a play about wall street he's just finished.

'i'm very monastic in a way. i feel very very responsible to this" he says. 'i waited so long to connect to myself as a writer that i can't think of anything i'd rather be doing anyway."

a graduate of brown and columbia universities with degrees in theater and film akhtar is the son of doctors who grew up outside milwaukee. drama and friction were part of his everyday life.

'i grew up in a punjabi house. everyone's yelling at each other all the time" he says laughing.


 


Arab News




  MENA News Headlines
 Mar 28 2017 - Kan Yama Kan Inaugurates a 2000-book School Library in IndiaMENAFN Press
(MENAFN Editorial)The Kan Yama Kan (Once Upon a Time) initiative, a subsidiary of the UAE Board on Books for Young People (UAEBBY), has recently inaugurated a 2,000-book library at the Naushera Mewat ...

 Mar 28 2017 - KIB’s showjumping team earns new accoladeMENAFN Press
(MENAFN Editorial)The Kuwait International Bank (KIB) showjumping team recently earned a new impressive accolade, adding to its growing roster of achievements, with jockey Ahmad Al-Mudaheka nabbing ...

 Mar 28 2017 - Munich’s Bayerischer Hof Hotel to spend $11 million to increase share of projected 3.6 million GCC visitors to Germany by 2030MENAFN Press
(MENAFN Editorial)The historic Bayerischer Hof Hotel in Munich is to spend over EURO12 million ($11 million) on a renovation project aimed at attracting more GCC visitors. The multi award-winning ...

 Mar 28 2017 - Bank Muscat - Ratings Lowered in line with Recent Oman Sovereign Rating Action Outlook Revised to StableMENAFN Press
(MENAFN Editorial) 28th March 2017 Bank Muscat’s Ratings Lowered in line with Recent Oman Sovereign Rating Action; Outlook Revised to ‘Stable’ Capital Intelligence Ratings (CI Ratings or CI), ...

 Mar 28 2017 - H.E. Alfadhel Mohamed Al Harthy, Secretary General to the Cabinet inaugurates the 1st Edition of Smart City Summit OmanMENAFN Press
(MENAFN Editorial)The 1st Edition of the Smart City Summit Oman was inaugurated by H.E. Alfadhel Mohamed Al Harthy, Secretary General to the Cabinet at the Oman Convention & Exhibition Centre on 28th ...

 Mar 28 2017 - Sharjah Officially Launches its Childhood Protection NetworkMENAFN Press
(MENAFN Editorial)As part of its overall development strategy, and its efforts to provide a safe life, excellent childcare and to protect children’s rights, the Emirate of Sharjah launched the ...

 Mar 28 2017 - Al Mazaya Holding endorses 8 percent of share nominal value in cash for Shareholders in 2016MENAFN Press
(MENAFN Editorial)Al Mazaya Holding’s Ordinary General Assembly convened on Tuesday, March 28 2017, at Al Mazaya Tower, strategically located in Al Mirqab Area in Kuwait City, one of the company’s ...

 Mar 28 2017 - Sharjah to Showcase its Leading Integrated Business Environment at AIM 2017MENAFN Press
(MENAFN Editorial)Sharjah FDI Office (Invest in Sharjah) - the promotional arm of Sharjah Investment and Development Authority (Shurooq) - has announced that it will participate at the seventh ...

 Mar 28 2017 - In the presence of HH Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum, H.E. Essa Kazim, Governor of DIFC, welcomes President of the Republic of Kazakhstan and distinguished delegationMENAFN Press
(MENAFN Editorial)His Excellency Essa Kazim, Governor of Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC), earlier this week welcomed His Excellency Nursultan Nazarbayev, the President of the Republic of ...

 Mar 28 2017 - City Centre Rotana Doha celebrates Vietnamese Food Week with Iron Chef Michael BaoMENAFN Press
(MENAFN Editorial)Teatro, City Centre Rotana’s specialty signature restaurant, in partnership with Emirates Airline will host a Vietnamese Food Week featuring award winning Iron Chef Michael Bao ...

more...


 





Google

 
 

Middle East North Africa - Financial Network

MENAFN News Market Data Countries Tools Section  
 

Middle East North Africa - Financial Network
Arabic MENAFN

Main News
News By Industry
News By Country

Search News
Market Indices
Quotes & Charts

Global Indices
Arab Indices

Commodoties

Oil & Energy

Currencies Cross Rates
Currencies Updates
Currency Converter

USA Stocks
Arab Stocks
 

Algeria 
Bahrain 
Egypt 
Iraq
Jordan 
Kuwait 
Lebanon
Morocco 
Oman 
Palestine
Qatar 
Saudi Arabia 
Syria
Tunisia 
UAE 
Yemen

Weather
Economic Calendar
Financial Glossary


Financial Calculators

RSS Feeds [XML]

Corporate Monitor

Events

Real Estate
Submit Your Property

Arab Research
Buy a Research

Press Releases
Submit your PR

Join Newsletters


 
© 2014 menafn.com All Rights Reserved.  Terms of Service | Privacy Policy | Contact Us | Advertise | About MENAFN | Career Opportunities | Feedback | Help