Omar Hamdi, “Sticks and Stones”

Omar Hamdi's comedy special "Sticks and Stones" was filmed tonight at the Rich Mix. This meant, among other things, that Hamdi's grand entrance was recorded again at the end, along with several jokes the comedian had skipped over during the actual show, but the audience was still whooping and clapping and full of good will … Continue reading Omar Hamdi, “Sticks and Stones”

Sundance and “The Middle East”

Essa Chhabra writes of five films at Sundance that "Reveal What Life Is Like in the Middle East Now." Who comes up with these headlines? The films that take on "the formidable task of telling stories from the conflict and turmoil of the Middle East" include Brian Oakes' Jim: The James Foley Story, and Elite Zexer's Sandstorm, about Bedouin … Continue reading Sundance and “The Middle East”

Rock the Casbah

The Daily Star interviews Rock the Casbah stars Laila Marrakchi and Nadine Labaki. Marrakchi directed the film, while Labaki is a filmmaker in her own right, with her 2007 “Sikkar al-Banat” (Caramel), a dramedy centering on an east Beirut beauty salon, as well as“Wa Halla l’Wayn?” (Where Do We Go Now?) a fable-like film about … Continue reading Rock the Casbah

THIS Bridge: Arab, Middle Eastern & Muslim Artists

Lebanese American theater artist Andrea Assaf, founder of Art2Action, is spearheading a two year event series at The University of South Florida under the title THIS Bridge: Arab, Middle Eastern & Muslim Artists, a series "that speaks to what it means to be Arabic or Islamic in today’s society — with an emphasis on women who are either … Continue reading THIS Bridge: Arab, Middle Eastern & Muslim Artists

Ahmed Matar’s Black Humor

I have been listening to Ahmed Matar's poetry since childhood, when no long car ride was undertaken without the cassette tape of the Iraqi poet reciting poems, giving us lines which were a blend of humor and despair, ironic in  their tone, lacerating in their self-criticism, bringing us face to face with a shared Arab … Continue reading Ahmed Matar’s Black Humor

Funny Arabs with Maysoon Zayid

The comedy show ‘Funny Arabs’ by Maysoon Zayid, co founder of the Arab American Comedy Festival.  premiers in the UK with two performances in London and Liverpool, in association with the Arabic Arts Festival. The London Show was on the 23rd at SOAS Brunei Gallery Theatre, The Liverpool Show on the 25th,  Epstein Theatre. Here's some more about the … Continue reading Funny Arabs with Maysoon Zayid