Syrian Refugee Theatre Project

Festival: Category(s):

Essential Theatre is currently engaged in Phase 1 of our Syrian Refugee Theatre Project (working title).

If you are interested in getting involved, please fill out our Team Member application!

Join our Team!

About the Project:

Thanks to support from Turner Voices, between now and the end of June 2018, Essential Theatre is building relationships with and gathering the stories, insights and perspectives of Syrian refugees and their families from around metro-Atlanta through one-on-one interviews and community dialogues. We are looking for Syrian refugees, of course, but also others who are connected to Syrian refugees – refugee service organization volunteers and staff; neighbors, family and friends of Syrian refugees; etc.
This phase of our larger Syrian Refugee Theatre Project will culminate in a multi-day intensive workshop for team members and a public presentation during the week of June 20 (World Refugee Day)

About Us:

Essential Theatre is the only theatre company exclusively dedicated to producing work by Georgia playwrights. We’ve been around for decades and are most well known for our annual play festival: this summer will be our 20th, in fact!
As for the “we” referenced in the project description: Essential is the umbrella organization,  Jennifer Kimball is the project coordinator, and we are in the process of collecting team members for this project right now: we need people willing to share their stories, story collectors/interviewers, story sorters, translators and artists and writers willing to put together the public performance at the end. Training and support will be provided each step of the way, but we want to make sure we have all the project’s stakeholders represented in our creative team, not just Essential Theatre. If you are a refugee or refugee service community member, we are interested in finding ways we can work together deeply and meaningfully, and not just create a theatre project. If there’s a way that our project can forward your goals, we are interested in finding out.


Upcoming/Of Interest:

Past SRTP (and related) events:

  • April 12 SRTP community information meeting
  • Thursday, May 3, 2018 (5:30-7:30pm)Dialogue Across Differences workshop
    In this introductory, experiential workshop, Alexandria Tesfaye Harris and McKenzie Wren will show you how to improve your listening skills and ask powerful questions to help create courageous conversations. This workshop is not a part of the Syrian Refugee Theatre Project, but it exemplifies the practices we seek to embody, in this and all Essential Voices projects. Cost: $15
  • Thursday, May 10, 2018 (8-10am)Tapestri Mother’s Day Baby Shower
    This is a great opportunity to meet some of Tapestri’s staff, learn more about anti-human trafficking and domestic violence programs in Atlanta, and shower Tapestri’s clients – immigrant and refugee survivors of domestic violence and human trafficking – with love for their little ones. This event is not a part of the Syrian Refugee Theatre Project. Free to attend, donations for mothers gladly accepted.
  • Saturday, May 12, 2018 (2-5pm) – Sixth Annual Clarkston Tell Me A Story! Festival at the Clarkston Community Center
    Bring your family for a free afternoon of stories from around the world, language and art activities, fun ideas for healthy eating, and more. While supplies last, each family in attendance will receive a shopping bag like the one shown here, plus there will be free book giveaways, valuable door prizes, and even a visit from The Cat in The Hat! This event is not a part of the Syrian Refugee Theatre Project. Free Admission
  • Wednesday, May 23, 2018 (7pm) – Six Words Fresh Off the Boat: A Backstory Show
    Join Larry Smith, founder of the Six-Word Memoir Project and its bestselling book series. “Six Words Fresh Off the Boat” focuses on stories of immigration, identity, and coming to America. The Carter Library’s six words about this collection: “It could not be more timely.”
    Notable Atlanta contributors will share their powerful backstories, including Clarkston Mayor Ted Terry, Ricky McKinnie (the Blind Boys of Alabama), Dr. Gulshan Harjee (co-founder, Clarkston Community Health Clinic), Dr. Heval Kelli (cardiology fellow, Emory), Leon Ndahimwa Shombana (Refuge Coffee), Christopher Wedge (co-founder, Sons of Pitches FC), Shaheen Rana (Georgia Tech), Shauna Greene (Six-Word Memoirs) — with special guest Senator Jason Carter, who will share President Carter’s six words from the book.
    The evening will close with our signature “Six-Word Slam” when the audience is invited to share their own Six-Word Memoirs. (City Lights Interview)

    Free Admission
  • Team Member Training: Saturday, May 26 (not open to the public)

This project made possible thanks to support from