Once We Were Kings

by April 19, 2015

What it means to be a young,
queer and Muslim migrant

Crescent-shaped pegs in a Southern Cross-shaped hole.

Third Culture Kids will present the world premiere of Once We Were Kings at The Blue Room Theatre from 12-30 May as part of the Season One, 2015 program.

Depicted through both personal accounts and imagined encounters, Once We Were Kings is feisty and intensely lyrical, with moments of dark humour.

Written by Dure Khan and directed by Mustafa Al Mahdi, Once We Were Kings sheds light on the myriad of Muslim identities that are often sidelined, silenced and closeted by communities and the mainstream media. Drawn from stories of struggle and disillusion and woven together with fantasy, Once We Were Kings explores what it means to be young, queer and Muslim in today’s Australia.

For Khan, the story draws from her own experiences. “The play started out as a means to make peace with my own multifaceted identity many years ago and has now taken on a life of its own. My sincerest hope is that it starts much needed conversation in the Muslim community and broader society about what it means to be young, religious and queer. I also hope it helps other queer or questioning Muslims find themselves and one another. We are not Haraam*, and we are not alone.”

The essence of such a powerful message is what drew Mahdi to the project. “This project will not only inspire young minorities to speak out, but to do so artistically.” The show will be complemented with a special art exhibition displaying pieces from artists who have been censored in their own countries. Third Culture Kids’ mission here is to give a voice to the voiceless and disenfranchised, relating the struggles of real people to the issues explored in the play.