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


Hazem Shammas
Oonagh Sherrard


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

Performance Times

Tuesday to Thursday 7.30pm
Friday & Saturday 7pm & 8.30pm
Sunday 7pm

Preview (bookable)
7.30pm, 19 January

Opening Night (invitation only)
7.30pm, 20 January

50 mins (no interval)


Belvoir’s ticket prices can be dynamically adjusted either up or down without notice. This can apply to a small number of tickets in response to demand for a specific performance date or time.

Prices listed on the Ticket Prices page account for the majority of tickets but please contact Box Office for current prices on all tickets available. Full ticket terms and conditions are also available on the same page.


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.


Shammas is an extraordinary story-teller, and the marriage of his performance and the text is the work’s great strength.


Ben Neutze | Daily Review

You’ll laugh, you’ll cry, you’ll wish the story didn’t end.



Dee Jefferson | Time Out

The overall effect is entrancing. When the end came, it was like being gently shaken from a reverie. I could have listened to another hour.

Jason Blake | Eight Nights a Week

The Tribe feels like an intimate yarn, offering an authentic glimpse into a family and a culture: a genuine slice of life delivered with real love.

Jo Litson | Scene and Heard