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9 July 2023

14.00 start

Chambers of the Heart

Hassan Abdulrazzak, presented with Shubbak Festival

Four women confront love, desire and memory in stories spanning East and West in this staged reading.

Staged reading.


Four women confront love, desire and memory in stories spanning East and West in this staged reading of Chambers of the Heart.


Newly divorced and adjusting to living alone in lockdown, 30-something Yasmine turns to online dating but there is something oddly familiar about who she meets. 


Reem is a Syrian refugee in her early 40s fleeing her country but unable to let go of the memory of an unrequited love. 


Warda, recently widowed in her 50s, is hosting a university friend who ignites suppressed emotions. 


Mother is in her early 70s and reluctant to be on stage as she is interrogated by her son who is trying to unlock the past. 


Written by Hassan Abdulrazzak, directed by Sepy Baghaei and performed by Laila Alj.


Laila Alj


Laila is a London-based Moroccan performer. She is also a steering group member of MENA Arts UK. Theatre credits include: All’s Well That Ends Well (RSC), Hakawatis (Globe Theatre), Trouf/Scenes from *71 Years (L’Artisto/Centre Culturel Néapolis), French Without Tears (Orange Tree Theatre), A Night in Provence (Mill at Sonning), Ignorance (Hampstead Theatre). Screen credits include: Landscapers (HBO), FBI International (CBS), Ten Percent (Amazon), Homeland (Fox), Casualty (BBC). Radio includes: French Like Faïza, Lullaby, Girls of Riyadh.


Hassan Abdulrazzak


Hassan Abdulrazzak’s plays include The Special Relationship (Soho Theatre, 2020), And Here I Am (Arcola Theatre, 2017 and touring), Love, Bombs and Apples (Arcola Theatre, 2016 and UK tour; Golden Thread, San Francisco, 2018 followed by a second UK tour; Kennedy Centre, Washington DC, 2019), The Prophet (Gate theatre, 2012) and Baghdad Wedding (Soho

Theatre, London 2007; BBC Radio 3, 2008; Belvoir St Theatre, Sydney 2009; Akvarious productions, Delhi & Mumbai 2010). Hassan has translated numerous Arabic plays. He is the recipient of George Devine, Meyer-Whitworth, Pearson theatre awards as well as the Arab British Centre Award for Culture.


Sepy Baghaei


Sepy Baghaei is an Iranian-Australian theatre director based in London. Selected credits include: As director: Sokhan Begoo (Royal Court); Habibti Driver (Octagon Theatre); Mycorrhiza, Little Women, Wilde Tales, and Citizen (The Space); Re: Memory (Old 505 Theatre); Grimm Tales (City of Sydney Library). As associate director: The Boy With Two Hearts (National Theatre/Wales Millennium Centre). As staff/assistant director: Manor (National Theatre); Once Upon A Time In Nazi Occupied Tunisia (Almeida); Welcome To Iran (Theatre Royal Stratford East/National Theatre); Reasons To Stay Alive (Sheffield Theatres/English Touring Theatre); Othello (English Touring Theatre); As You Like It (Regent’s Park Open Air Theatre).


Estimated running time

90 minutes

Performance times

14.00 start

Ticket prices

Pay What You Can (recommended price £5)


Full-time students, those aged under 16, senior citizens, the unwaged, members of Equity and BECTU


Theatro Technis is fully wheelchair accessible. Guide dogs and hearing dogs are welcome in the auditorium. There is a Loop system fitted in the main auditorium. If you have any questions or specific requests, please email

Contains themes relating to sexual abuse

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