INAD Palestinian Theatre, Until When?

Review in Issue 15-3 | Autumn 2003

The question speaks of the despair embedded in this broken-hearted plea for freedom and justice for the people of Palestine living in what they have to call Israel. We were given a dramatic taste of the violence, the fear, the noise that surrounds these people, through this piece by INAD Theatre, based in the West Bank.

Played by a group of four actors moving among a setting of white stones, the performance moved seamlessly from episode to episode, from a wedding to a death to a birth, from a celebration to a lamentation. The simple costumes and the symbolic changes of costumes were the only colourful element in the live part, although there were plenty of garish hues in the insistent television insertions of bland newsreaders and documentary footage reporting the situation to the world. These acted as a telling parallel commentary to the action.

My young companion found it a difficult show to like, especially the protracted noisy opening when each member of the audience entered separately through a tunnel of explosions and injured victims, making those who arrived early deafened and bored by the time the last person got through, about twenty minutes later. He was also frustrated by the lack of translation.

I found much of it beautiful and very moving, not least the untheatricality of the players, all of whom looked strained and exhausted. But I believe the show needed a mature audience to appreciate it, and the same is surely true for the post-show discussion, which was illuminating and disturbing. A memorable evening.

Presenting Artists
Presenting Festival
Presenting Venue
Date Seen
  1. May 2003

This article in the magazine

Issue 15-3
p. 26