Adapted by Michael Mohammed Ahmad & Janice Muller
Based on the novel by Michael Mohammed Ahmad
Director Janice Muller

  • Venue Surry Hills Backyards
  • Dates 19 January – 7 February 2016

    After seeing its acclaimed debut season at the 2015 Sydney Festival, we were keen to bring Urban Theatre Projects’ The Tribe from the streets of Sydney’s west into our own backyard in Surry Hills. Not figuratively either: it actually is a show for the intimacy of the humble back garden, and that’s where we’ll present it – in an assortment of Surry Hills backyards.

    Performed by the inimitable Hazem Shammas (Mother Courage and Her Children, Scorched), this is a story of belonging, told by Bani as a small boy finding his way in a young country by recounting tales of an old country – and at the heart of it all, his love for his grandmother. She’s the core presence in Bani’s life, carrying all the truths of  ‘The Tribe’ – a small Muslim sect who fled to Australia from Lebanon. Hazem’s Bani is like a visionary child channelling a Bedouin storyteller – all amongst the Hills Hoists, paling fences, frangipani and jasmine of the Sydney yard. Don’t miss this very special event.

    The Tribe is my attempt to counteract the limited and simplistic representation that the Arab-Australian Muslim community of Western Sydney has received to date, and to offer a broader, more intimate understanding. It is also an act of self-determination – a declaration of the right to reclaim and tell our own stories in our own way.’
    Michael Mohammed Ahmad

    Michael Mohammed Ahmad was named one of the Sydney Morning Herald’s 2015 Best Young Novelists. His novella The Tribe was shortlisted for the NSW Premier’s Literary Award 2015 (UTS Glenda Adams Award for New Writing) and the Readings New Australian Writing Award 2014. It was also nominated for the 2015 Voss Literary Prize.

    An Urban Theatre Projects Production


    Adapted by Michael Mohammed Ahmad & Janice Muller
    Based on the novel by Michael Mohammed Ahmad
    Director Janice Muller
    Composer Oonagh Sherrard
    Designer/Operator Frank Mainoo
    Belvoir Front of House Coordinator Kelsey Lee


    Hazem Shammas
    Oonagh Sherrard


    Watch this great, short video about the making of The Tribe and the original Sydney Festival season in 2015. This gives you a real sense of the show and the atmosphere of experiencing this show in a suburban backyard.

    Production images by Catherine Cranston

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