Kurdish culture is one of the oldest surviving world cultures. Due to its location, a long history of tension in the Middle East has threatened Kurdish cultural transmission for at least 90 years (since the fall of the Ottoman Empire at the end of the First World War). Though American political leaders have consistently supported the idea of Kurdistan and Kurdish independence, the fight for the right to exist has been a long and bloody one for the Kurds.
Furthermore, the Kurdistan area has recently been the victim of major natural disasters. In February and March 2023, Turkey suffered numerous earthquakes, including one magnitude 7.8 on February 6th. This earthquake is reported to have killed over 50,000 people in the Kurdistan regions of Turkey and Syria. International relief efforts have sent hundreds of thousands of dollars of support, but the systemic oppression of Kurdish people by Erdogan's regime in Turkey has resulted in an unequal distribution of relief.
AUDREY ROSE DEGEZ
I will dance with those oak trees as long as
I need a street
Empty of bloodstains,
A street that has never seen
Or known terror.
Let it be flawless, let it be flawless, flawless
Like the sex of these girls that are killed unjustly
Let it be long, let it be long, long,
Like their agony.
In Halabja, Iraq, in March of 1988, Saddam Hussein’s regime committed attacked and murdered Kurdish peoples through the use of chemical weapons, as part of the Anfal ethnic cleansing campaign. Set in a carpet store at this time, I will dance with those oak trees as long as takes us on a poetic voyage into the life of three Kurdish women, inspired by the poetry of Kajal Ahmad and the characters Gilgamesh, Enkidu, and Ninsun from the world’s most ancient epic poem: Gilgamesh. Carpets, a chair, a suitcase and strings create the environment in which two actresses interpret the three different women and how they react to a violent and unstable outside world. Accompanied by soundscapes inspired by traditional Kurdish music, this international duo uses objects, puppets, and a multilayered world of reality, dreams, memories, and visions to explore the question of what it means to be a hero when you have no other choice.
Theatre of Cultural
Physical theater practices for promoting, protecting and preserving oppressed cultures through co-creation.
REGENERATION OF UKRANIAN PUPPET THEATER FROM THE ASH
Performance "NIGHT CALL I" (30 min.) The lecture focuses on the development and changes in the Ukrainian puppet theater over the past year and a half, discussion (1 hour) by DARIA HOLOVCHANSKA
Trauma-informed storytelling workshop
Helping refugees post-resettlement
We are grateful to all our sponsors.
A special thanks to The Posner Foundation, The Wilke Family Foundation, Louis Dégez, and David & Dawne Hickton.
We are fiscally sponsored by 501(c)(3) organization coLAB Arts, Inc.