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ReOrient 2015: Middle East Festival & Forum | SF

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Saturday, October 3, 2015 - 9:15 am to 6:15 pm | Cost: FREE*
*All Forum Panels are Free but the Arabic Music Concert and Children's Show are ticketed events.

Z Space | 450 Florida Street, San Francisco, California 94110

Event Details

ReOrient 2015: Middle East Festival & Forum | SF

Think you know the Middle East? Think again an come out to learn about this culturally rich region at ReOrient 2015.

With talkbacks, panels, roundtable conversations, a family show, and a recital for Arabic music lovers, ReOrient 2015 is an artistic celebration and political exploration of this transforming region for curious and engaged theatre lovers and those passionate about international themes. You’ll find an esteemed group of international artists, scholars, and activists leading bold conversations about theatre and the Middle East.

ReOrient 2015
– Saturday, October 3, 9am-6:15pm
– Sunday, October 4, 9:30am-6pm
Z Space, 450 Florida St, San Francisco

2015 Schedule:


  • 9:15am – 10:00am Keynote Address – Sunaina Maira “Youth, Activism, and Arts: Cultures of Protest/Protesting Culture”
    Art is an important medium of protest in the Middle East and across the world. How can artistic expression challenge the dominant assumptions about Muslim and Middle Eastern youth and communities in the US? What does it mean for protest culture to also protest cultural norms and hierarchies—of race, religion, class, gender, and sexuality? Maira will draw on her research on Palestinian, Afghan, and South Asian American youth culture and activism. The talk will be followed by a dialogue with the audience.
  • 10:15am – 11:15am: Project Alo? An International Mobile Video Play
    See what happens when pairs of artists, one based in the US and one in the Middle East, are asked to communicate through video clips captured entirely on cell-phones! Golden Thread’s global theatre collaboration, Project Alo? connects artists in performative conversations across borders, circumventing financial and political barriers with smart phone technology.
  • 11:30am – 12:45pm: Orientations: Queering the Intersections of Gender, Race, Ethnicity, Religion and Middle Eastern Diasporic Communities
    For many artists, it feels as if you must choose between exploring your ethnic identity or your queer identity in your work, but these panelists refuse to accept this either/or convention, and work within the intersection of the two worlds, using art and performance to link and reclaim their identities.
  • 3:30pm – 4:45pm: Divided Stages: 50 Years of Performing Iran in the US
    Four generations of Iranian theatre makers reflect on the joys and challenges of producing plays on North American stages, and discuss their hopes for the future of theatre from and about Iran.
  • 5:00pm – 6:15pm: Roots, Resistance & Reconciliation
    These artists discuss how the arts are an essential component of rebuilding cultural identity and community after a nation faces a large-scale tragedy.


  • 9:30am-12:30pm: Theatre Between Home and Exile: New Palestinian Voices
    Palestinian artists work in different languages and in many different countries. This panel will bring five unique Palestinian voices from around the world together to discuss the complexity of telling their stories at home and abroad.
    Chair: Rebekah Maggor, Assistant Professor of Theatre, Rowan University Panelists: Massoud Hamdan (Professor, Playwright & Director, Israel) Yasser Abu Shaqra (Playwright, Turkey) via skype Hanna Khalil (Playwright, UK) Ismail Khalidi (Playwright, US) Dalia Taha (Playwright, OPT)
    This panel will conclude with the exclusive launch of Inside/Outside: Six Plays from Palestine and the Diaspora, a new anthology edited by Naomi Wallace and Ismail Khalidi, that brings together work by six dynamic Palestinian playwrights from both occupied Palestine and the Diaspora.
  • 3:30pm – 5:00pm Theatre Bay Area
    Is Hyphenated Theatre Dead?: Supporting culturally-specific voices in an increasingly poly-racial America
    As the population of the Bay Area continues to diversify, how will culturally-specific voices be represented in the performing arts? This panel examines the future of hyphenated theatre in the face of poly-racial America.
    Chair: Brad Erickson, Executive Director, Theatre Bay Area Panelists: TBA

Disclaimer: Please double check event information with the event organizer as events can be canceled, details can change after they are added to our calendar, and errors do occur.

Cost: FREE*
*All Forum Panels are Free but the Arabic Music Concert and Children's Show are ticketed events.
Categories: **Annual Event**, *Top Pick*, Lectures & Workshops, San Francisco
Venue: Z Space
Address: 450 Florida Street, San Francisco, California 94110