Sulaimani, Iraq – May 7, 2012 – The American University of Iraq, Sulaimani (AUIS) student production of “Noor”, a play by Akbar Ahmed, premieres tomorrow, May 8. The show will run throughout May at Sulaimani University's College of Fine Arts in Raparin.
Eight months ago, the playwright, distinguished scholar Ambassador Akbar Ahmed, gave AUIS students permission to perform “Noor” for the first time ever in the Middle East. The play tells the story of three brothers who try to rescue their sister Noor, who has been kidnapped by unidentified soldiers during Ramadan. The play's setting is unnamed, but Ahmed mentions early in the script that it could be Baghdad, Cairo, Karachi or Kabul.
“Noor is a controversial play, and at times directly questions the wisdom of the American occupation. But the playwright, Akbar Ahmed, has been very careful to look at all sides of each issue,” said director and Head of Drama at AUIS, Peter Friedrich. “In my opinion, one message of the play is that if someone is pointing a gun at you, does it matter if they are Kurdish…American…Arab? There are heroes, and villains, in every group of people. Understanding that can stop violence before it starts.”
Students have been preparing for the play since October and are excited to bring their hard work and enthusiasm for the exciting script to the stage.
“The play is about the struggles the family faces as they search for Noor. It also deals with society in Iraq and important topics like honor and tolerance,” said AUIS student and actress, Banoo Hewa. “Anybody, even if they don’t speak English, will enjoy the play because we have incorporated pieces that everyone will understand.”
The play stars AUIS students Kardo Kamil, Muhammed Baheej, Isa Muhammed Isa, Mahdy Murad, Rawa Hamza, Helin Sofi, Saman Karim, Mustafa Ahmed, Abdul Alkhafaji, Mewan Sofi, and Banoo Omer.