Quotes: US 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
 Oct 1 2014 - Japan volcano death toll hits 43 as new bodies foundKhaleej Times
(MENAFN - Khaleej Times) Rescuers found seven more people in cardiac arrest near the mountain top and are now carrying them down an official in Otaki village where one mountain trail begins told ...

 Oct 1 2014 - Shahid Kapoor and Shraddha Kapoor speak about their film 'Haider'Khaleej Times
(MENAFN - Khaleej Times) Vishals fascination with Shakespeare is undeniable. Shahid Kapoor was not sure whose coffee he was having while he sat on the couch with City Times during his recent trip to ...

 Oct 1 2014 - Newlyweds set to officialise perfect weddingKhaleej Times
(MENAFN - Khaleej Times) Newlyweds George Clooney and Amal Alamuddin were expected to hold a civil service at Venice town hall yesterday to officialise their star-studded more than perfect ...

 Oct 1 2014 - Qatar Stocks Gain SlightlyQatar News Agency
(MENAFN - QNA) Qatar Exchange index gained slightly by 30.24 points (+0.22%) when the bourse closed trading at 13,758.55 points here Wednesday. The trading value dropped to QR 613.628 million from ...

 Oct 1 2014 - QAPCO, Education Above All Sign Partnership AgreementQatar News Agency
(MENAFN - QNA) Qatar Petrochemical Company (QAPCO) and Education Above All Foundation (EAA) on Wednesday signed a partnership agreement, according to which QAPCO joins the international partners and ...

 Oct 1 2014 - Qatar's Hajj Mission Participates in GCC Annual Mission MeetingQatar News Agency
(MENAFN - QNA) Qatar's Hajj mission took part in the annual meeting for heads of GCC Hajj missions that was held Tuesday night at the headquarters of the Bahraini mission in Mecca. The meeting ...

 Oct 1 2014 - Alia Bhatt turns designerKhaleej Times
(MENAFN - Khaleej Times) Says director Karan Johar influences her fashion sense Photo: Agencies Alia Bhatt has turned designer for a line titled ‘Alia’ for an online shopping portal. ...

 Oct 1 2014 - Al Ain bow out in style in AFC Champions LeagueKhaleej Times
(MENAFN - Khaleej Times) The Boss exit despite beating Al Hilal by odd goal in three in AFC Champions Dubai: Ten-man Al Ain beat Saudi Arabia’s Al Hilal 2-1 in the second leg of the AFC ...

 Oct 1 2014 - Justin Rose aims for the skies in charity bidKhaleej Times
(MENAFN - Khaleej Times) Rose was set a task of hitting a succession of golf balls at a target 180 yards away from his elevated perch on the planes wing which has a wingspan of 64 metres. Golfer ...

 Oct 1 2014 - Aussies likely to miss services of three key playersKhaleej Times
(MENAFN - Khaleej Times) Glenn Maxwell Cameron Boyce and Pat Cummins may not be included in the team if they play the final of the Champions League T20 in India. Your browser does not support ...

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

IPO News
Islamic Finance News
Private Equity News

How-To Guides
Technology Section

Travel Section

Search News

Market Indices
Quotes & Charts

Global Indices
Arab Indices

US Markets Details

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
Investment Game
Economic Calendar
Financial Glossary

My MENAFN
Portfolio Tracker

Voting

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


 
© 2000 menafn.com All Rights Reserved.  Terms of Service | Privacy Policy | Contact Us | Advertise | About MENAFN | Career Opportunities | Feedback | Help