Actors performing. Photo: Supplied.

Bankstown Show – Young Arab Actors Tell Local Stories

“The Way” series is one of the Sydney theatre world’s best-kept secrets. For the past four years its group of young actors –many from Arabic speaking backgrounds — have created high-energy performances of power and visual impact expressing the realities of living in Western Sydney. Originally produced under the auspices of the Sydney Theatre Company and BYDS (Bankstown Youth Development Service), the series began with “Look the Other Way” (2012) and “The Other Way” (2013) attracting sell-out audiences from those in the know. Now, with the final play of the trilogy, “The Way”, the group is reaching out to invite theatre-goers from across Sydney into their lives and imagination.

Actors performing. Photo: Supplied.

Reflecting the cultural mix of the Bankstown community, the veterans of  “The Way” series of plays include graduates of  Sir Joseph Banks High School for whom working with internationally acclaimed  director Stefo Nantsou has been a life-changing experience. Their personal stories provide the content of the plays, presenting a picture of Arab and multi-cultural Sydney which defies stereotypes.

Nantsou is an inspiring, internationally acclaimed actor/writer/director/musician who began the project in his capacity as resident director at the Sydney Theatre Company (2008-2013). His unique way of working with his young cast creates heightened and at times poetic dramas out of their authentic experiences, words and  —  importantly – their music. The results are moving, convincing and sometimes hilarious — astonishing those who have never before encountered community-based theatre of such quality and originality.

The final play in the series, “The Way”, brings together several storylines as characters meet and intersect over the course of a day in Bankstown:

The Hajj family’s grandson Mohammed reacts badly to a grilling by immigration authorities on his return with mates from an overseas trip, gambling addict Minh Tran loses his elderly father newly arrived from Vietnam, the Tamati family reunites for a memorial vigil, the Del Sol daughter arrives from Spain to help in a family crisis, Mohammed’s mates fall under suspicion and sparks fly as Zahraa and her girlfriends hit town for a wild “hens” night out.  Meanwhile a group of Uber drivers transport foreign businessmen around Sydney. Central characters within each group are seemingly souls cast adrift, lost in the world, trying to find their way home.

THE WAY

Season runs from 2-10 October (2nd, 3rd, 9th, 10th – 7:00pm; 7th, 8th,- 1:00pm & 7:00pm)

Bankstown Arts Centre, 5 Olympic Parade, Bankstown

Bookings: 02 9793 8324 or http://www.trybooking.com/isqy

Tickets $10/$5conc

Tickets: $10 / $5 conc.

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