I was so lucky to get invited to a play yesterday in Al-Dasma theater. The play is called 3anbar wa 11 September (Aanbar and the 11th of September). The play is not only funny but absolutely heart melting. It carried themes from the love between a man towards his mother/daughter (and vice versa), touches on Kuwaiti family cliches, terrorism, and just pure humor. Oh, and one of the stars is Saad Al Faraj…that should be enough to get you up and off your feet to go watch the play. Click the jump to find out more about 3anbar wa 11 September.
I’ve actually never been to a professional play in Kuwait before. The only one before this has been amateur actors in high school putting on a show for parents and theater lovers. It was extremely refreshing to see this play, not only because it had a Kuwaiti actor whom is legendary (his history and work is beyond comprehension, and was in a recent award winning movie called Tora Bora).
Saad Al-Faraj and his team deliver laughs and I will be honest, towards the end almost had me in tears. I was surprised to see the turn out. IT WAS ABSOLUTELY FULL! I didn’t know in todays modern world that watching plays was such a big thing in Kuwait but the Al-Dasma theater was absolutely packed from the front row until the end!
Without giving too much away about the play. The plot starts off with a man(3anbar) who is unfortunate. Uneducated, illiterate, and portrayed as a goofy/stupid character. His mother and daughter open up the play and show you just how difficult his life actually is, with humor masking the reality of how hard his situation really is.
The story line shows Aanbar being visited by his two rich and powerful brothers; Saad (played by Saad Al-Faraj) and Sultan at the beginning of the play. They’re angered because he used their family name for his new in house restaurant (and they don’t even recognize him as a brother, he’s the black sheep of the family). So as you can imagine how the play picks up from there.
All the actors did not fail to deliver. Naturally my favorite two actors were 3anbar and Saad. I will tell you one thing. I could not stop laughing throughout the whole play. I don’t want to give the story line away but it progresses to show 3anbar in sticky situations as well as his two brothers and the influence the Americans have over Kuwait the second someone cries terrorism or anything political really. It was all in good humor so no harm done. They go on to completely mock Guantanamo and with humor show you (what you can’t help but have to think) is some truth behind it.
That’s as much as I’ll give away but I’ll tell you that there are some other hidden themes such as the issues that face generation gaps such as the one between Saad and his son in the play.
The play will be going on for what I believe to be the next two days. Feel free to call in the Al-Dasma theater and ask for pricing and timings. The play yesterday was scheduled to start at 8 (and started just a little bit after). It lasted for a good 2 hours with an intermission half way through but honestly it felt like half an hour. If you want to drop by Al-Dasma theater it’s just off the second ring road. Take the exit going towards the city on the 35 (cairo street) and then you’ll see it on your right hand side. It’s literally right next to the business school (maastrich) and the Kuwait Teachers Society (I think that’s the correct translation).
Hope you do go check it out. I had a blast, and even though my understanding of the Kuwaiti language is very basic. I understood the whole play so language shouldn’t be a barrier if you understand basic Arabic/Kuwaiti.
Oh and I’m sorry I don’t have any pics. They asked that no pictures or videos be taken. (It was dark and they didn’t want the actors to be distracted by flash photography, lights and so on).