A moving narrative about a group of people who chose to believe in Afghanistans future.
In 2005, a rising tide of optimism was sweeping through post-Taliban Afghanistan. Perhaps nothing captured this more poignantly than the performance of Shakespeares Loves Labours Lost by a group of Afghan actors in Kabul. After decades of war, oppression, intolerance and unimaginable devastation, men and women appeared on stage togetherforeign journalists sang praises, Afghan audiences cheered. The future held no limits, they all believed. Qais Akbar Omar, a writer, served as Assistant Director and interpreter for the French actress Corinne Jaber, who had visited Afghanistan on holiday and returned to direct the play; Stephen Landrigan, a playwright, assembled a team of Afghan translators to fashion in Dari a script as poetic as Shakespeares. In this brisk, warm and frequently funny account, Qais and Stephen capture the triumphs and foibles of the actors as they extend their passion for Afghan poetry to that of Shakespeare.
But violence has not yet had its fill of Afghanistan and tragedy visits its men and women every day. And yet, in the midst of carnage and despair, hope still remainsthat things will one day be better. A tribute to that hope, Shakespeare in Kabul is a moving narrative about a group of people who chose to believe in their countrys future.
About the Author
Stephen Landrigan is a playwright and former journalist who has reported for many organizations including The Washington Post and BBC Radio. He lives in Massachusetts, from where he works with the School of Leadership, Afghanistan (SOLA).
Qais Akbar Omar set up a carpet factory in his home to provide employment for women during the Taliban era. He lives in Kabul, where he writes books and manages his familys fourth-generation carpet business.
Author: Stephen Landrigan, Qais Akbar
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