Theatre Wallay

Wallay 1 cropped

Artists Rep & OSF host Pakistani Theatre Wallay's new work


PORTLAND: Artists Rep – June 26 & 28 @ 7:30pm
                 FREE, Family-friendly, reserve seats @ 503.241.1278 or HERE

ASHLAND: Oregon Shakespeare Festival’s Greenshow – June 30, July 2 & 4 @ 6:45pm
               FREE, Family-friendly, no reservations, more info:

On Common Ground is a funny, quirky, music- filled glimpse into the lives of artists living in Islamabad, Pakistan. Oregonians can expect lively stories of life in the Pakistani capital, as well as joyful Pakistani music and dance. Through this work these artists offer American audiences a peek into their lives living in an Islamic country and particularly their relationships with public spaces. They question: What does it mean to lose it? What does it mean to have it? How does access to public space affect the culture? These are questions that transcend a geographic location, but in this context the lived-experiences of these artists are illuminated for American audiences to consider.

On Common Ground will spark dialogue about an intercultural relatable subject matter. The theme of reclaiming communal space will resonate within the context of live theatre as it, too, is a shared experience in a public space.  This artistic and cultural exchange will create new person-to-person intercultural bridges between performers and audiences, between American and Pakistani artists, and between Theatre Wallay and American theatrical institutions Artists Repertory Theatre and Oregon Shakespeare Festival.    

This partnership is an opportunity for cultural and artist exchange.  While Theatre Wallay artists are in Portland and Ashland, they will have the opportunity to meet local artists, actors, dancers, musicians, educators, as well as technical and creative theatre practitioners to learn new skills and techniques.

WRITERS: Zainab Hassan, Amna Mawaz Khan, Ammar Khalid, Fizza Hassan, Muhammad Haseeb Ali Chishti, Atif Siddique, Mustafa Hassan, Imran Iftikhar, Muhammad Usman Khan, Aiman Rathore, Salman Haider, Shafaq Malik, Asad Raza

CAST: Fizza Hassan, Ammar Khalid, Imran Iftikhar, Atif Siddique, Muhammad Usman Khan, Syeda Rabia Masood Pasha, Muhammad Haseeb Ali Chishti, Zainab Hassan, Amna Mawaz Khan (dancer), Razia Abrar (vocalist), Irfan Masih (tabla), Wajih Ull Hussnain Hamid (Sitar)

CREATIVE TEAM: Linda Alper/Deviser, David Studwell/Director, Sameer Karasu/Costume Designer, Kathleen Mulligan/Vocal Coach

PRODUCTION TEAM: Muhammad Kazim Hussain & Stephanie Mulligan/Stage Managers, Mustafa Hassan/Sound Designer, Carl Faber/Lighting Designer, Kristeen Crosser & Artists Repertory Theatre/Production staff, Linda Alper/Producer, Kathleen Mulligan/Executive Producer

Watch the video documentary: HERE
Visit the On Common Ground Facebook page: HERE
To learn more about the artists visit the On Common Ground blog: HERE

Brown Bag Lunch cross cultural music exchange| Tuesday, June 27 @ Noon
Mic Crenshaw, LaRhonda & Mark Steele, Subashini Ganesan, Tom Grant, Susannah Mars & Briley Neugebauer 

Post Closing Show cross-cultural jam| Wednesday, June 28 @ 9pm
Tom Grant, Mic Crenshaw, Doug Detrick, Subashini Ganesan, Stephanie Schneiderman, Tony Furtado & Briley Neugebauer

Theatre Wallay, the only nonprofit theatre company in Islamabad, Pakistan, committed to education and peace building, has written an original piece exploring public spaces – schools, squares, mosques, parks – the way these places reflect the lives of modern Pakistanis and what it means to lose these spaces due to terrorism.  Learn more here:

The script was developed by Artists Rep Resident Artist and 24-season OSF company member Linda Alper, who traveled to Pakistan first on a Fulbright Grant in 2015. Her American colleagues, actor/director David Studwell (known to Portland audiences from PCS’s Fiddler on the Roof,) and Ithaca College voice professor Kathleen Mulligan who is the executive producer, are also Fulbright scholars. 

“When I was a Fulbrighter in Taiwan, we had a great motto: ‘A little more knowledge, a little less conflict,’” said Linda Alper.  “And that’s what this piece is about – learning all the things we all have in common, despite our differences in religion, region, gender.  On Common Ground tells the real stories of life in contemporary Islamabad – funny, ironic, irreverent, respectful – in an attempt to make sense of the unpredictable lives our artists live as teachers, students, wives, sons, parents, sports fans, writers, theatre artists, activists, musicians and friends.”

This project is about cross-cultural understanding, getting to know Muslim artists from Pakistan and offering those artists experiences with Oregon’s Artists Rep and OSF. It's about personalizing "the other," fostering a little more knowledge, and a little less conflict. Supported by a Cultural Affairs grant from the U.S. Embassy in Islamabad.

Learn more HERE.


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