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A script-in-hand showing

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The Event

Our Performers

Golty telling the cast how he wants to play the song.

Golty telling the cast how he wants to play the song.

Our Venue

HOME in Manchester. One of the coolest spaces to be in.

HOME in Manchester. One of the coolest spaces to be in.

The Cast

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Sidiki strikes up the rhythm..

Trailer

Enjoy! Then join us for the show in 2020.

Bottom of the Pile

Stan's parents don't want him to marry Laila because she's brown.

About Us

A Reason to Be

  

Woman of my Dreams was written to give voice to millions of women around the world who have been marginalised in the debate on female genital cutting. To be regarded as damaged for a cultural practice, and then abandoned, has done their identity no favours. Nor to their relationships with men they love because no woman, neither black, brown nor white, is free from sexual tyranny. 


This play equates all women. Perhaps it is part of fourth wave feminism that draws no distinctions between races in the search for dignity. 


And though we are concerned with western hegemony and the ignorance of legislating bodies that compound injustice, in this play we have been careful to walk the fine line between understanding, anger and condemnation of female circumcision and do not wish to be drawn into that argument. We have simply tried, with all our humanity, to draw attention to a woman’s predicament, and to the lay of the land in the unknown territory of her heart. 


  

The Cast and crew

ANTHONY FLEMING (CLEMENT SANFORD – THE JUDGE)

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Anthony Fleming has appeared in various feature films, plays and commercials as well as audio productions.He is currently in working in a production with Ray Shell ( Starlight Express ,Officer and a Gentleman)and Nicky Matthews.

Anthony appears courtesy of AL Management Manchester.

GELI BERG (CAITLIN SANFORD – CLEMENT’S WIFE)

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A Singer-songwriter, poet, DJ, broadcaster and vocal coach, Geli has been working in culturally diverse arts for over 20 years. Until recently she was a member of Manchester International Festival’s Sacred Sounds Choir and Amani African Community Choir. 

In 2012-13, Geli devised and produced Behind the Silken Veil a mixed media dance production in in collaboration with dancers from India, Uzbekistan and Morocco for which she also worked as an sound designer and narrator. 

This is Geli’s first professional acting role. 

DENNIS GERALD - (SHEKA - JADA'S HUSBAND)

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Dennis Gerald is a spiritual, mistake-making, externally ambiguous, internally fragile, mum-loving global being. An experienced presenter, Dennis produced a magazine programme on local radio for 10-years.

In recent years, Dennis, who is a professionally trained Voice Over Artist, has been cast for numerous mature modelling roles.  And either as a supporting artist or indeed a lead actor Dennis’s body of on-screen dramatic work, continues to grow.

SEKI WILLIAMS (JADA – CLEANER WORKING FOR CAITLIN)

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 Seki Williams has always had a passion for performing, whether it was live on stage, in front of a camera, or just among friends. She enjoys the feelings and emotions that can be portrayed within performing, whether through dance, written word or musical performance. On account of a strict upbringing, she has only recently managed to break free of a strict upbringing and been able to follow her passion. Playing the role of Jada, has awarded her a new-found confidence in her craft. 

SARAH SAYEED (LAYLA – STANLEY’S MUSLIM GIRLFRIEND)

Sarah Sayeed is an actor, writer, composer and musician. Her acting credits include East London West

  

Sarah Sayeed is an actor, writer, composer and musician with over 15 years of experience working collaboratively with a range of artists. Her acting credits include East London West Sydney directed by Jonzi D for the Sydney Festival, MADE with Target Theatre Company and All at Sea for the BBC. Sarah is currently Experimentor Artist with the New Art Exchange.

Writing commissions include her first full length play -Descent with David Calcutt (Midland Actors Centre), My Heroes are Behind Me for BBC Radio 5 (The Verb) and Song for Sophia (Durham Book Festival). 

Sarahs musical work includes commission by West End musical composer Kuljit Bhamra and Sound and Music to write Found. Sarah is currently composer and musical director for Anil Gupta and Richard Pinto's new version of Tartuffe at the Royal Shakespeare Company.

GARETH BENNETT-RYAN (STANLEY SANFORD – CLEMENT & CAITLIN’S SON)

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Actor and audiobook narrator, Gareth Bennett-Ryan, trained at Birmingham School of Acting. His acting credits are extensive and include UK and Ireland tours of Private Lives and The Birthday Party (London Classic Theatre); Macbeth, As You Like It (Shakespeare’s Globe); The History Boys and Macbeth (Colchester Mercury); Dick Whittington and Mother Goose (Theatre Royal Bury St Edmunds); Antony and Cleopatra and Much Ado About Nothing (Cambridge Shakespeare Festival) and NewsRevue - the world’s longest running comedy sketch show. His many screen credits include: Shakespeare Uncovered, Word on the Street (BBC); Mercenaries (ABC); and Hate Story 4 (T-Series, Bollywood). 

FERESHTEH MOZAFFERI (RECEPTIONIST) (AND STAGE MANAGER)

Fereshteh is a multidisciplinary artist. She has appeared in plays and films and she has written and

  

Fereshteh is a multidisciplinary artist. She has appeared in plays and films and she has written and performed her solo shows and poetry in venues and festivals across the country. Her short stories and plays have appeared in anthologies in Farsi and English. She is creative director of Sheba Arts.

RASHIDA MUSTAFA (WRITER AND DIRECTOR)

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Rashida Mustafa is a psychologist, writer and teacher, published in Indian journalism and the International PEN. She has won several awards for her writing, and for her work in learning technologies.

She has worked extensively with migrant communities in the UK and commissioned to make films about them with EU and public sector funding. 

In 2010, Mira Nair, renowned Hollywood director, made a short film about her, which she co-wrote, called How Can it Be, in an international series on films about women.  

Review: Tiki Black

Rashida Mustafa’s Woman of my dreams

POSTED BY FUSSY TONGUE ON FEBRUARY 11, 2019 IN EXPLORING THE ARTS, REFLECTING LIFE | 3

VIEWS

Rashida Mustafa’s Woman of my dreams was announced as a controversial

new musical theatre production. Yet, it is written less to be so than to spark

a much needed discussion around FGC/M, Female Genital Cutting /

Mutilation.

Watching the play among an invited audience of legal, cultural and medical

specialists, as part of the annual festival of the North West’s creative talents

at Home, Manchester, I realised how tightly woven the subject was into the

different cultures and lateral subjects and their clashing into one another for

the better and the worse. One must admired the intimidatingly mammoth

task that the writer set for herself and from which, at every point of

legitimate temptation, she did not back out.

The press release speaks of a debate around the cultural and sexual

implications of FGC but this is vertiginously so much more, as if the apparent

main theme is only a metaphor, as one of the actors suggested, for a deeper

cut.

The work speaks beyond the words of its award-winning writer, Mumbai-born

clinical and psychoanalytic psychologist Rashida Mustafa. It is raw,

unapologetic at speaking its facts, using the language that, as her son urged

her, expresses the play rather than her own more pulled back language.

To be inspired by the world and still be able to keep one’s voice, to be

exposing tearing and still be able to keep one’s calm, to be expected to

channel the fashionable and politically correct and yet voice as impartial an

observation as is possible alongside the factual results of study, (and for the

actors in such controversial roles) to have your skin crawl at some of the

sentences that needed exposing and yet deliver them convincingly against

your feelings to betray that truth, to give your audience a seat and tremor

its grounds, is what the script-in-hand showing was executing all at once.

Imagine this. Your voice is muffled, your concerns ignored, your matter

binned, your message buried deep back within you… Over and over

again.. And there, suddenly, like a seed deeply sown, your message rises

from within and speaks of the pain that gnaws at our guts. It politicallyincorrectly

lifts the veils that protect the embarrassing truths. It says that we

don’t need to respond to life as a constant uncoordinated reflex of survival.

We can as, human beings, higher than jungle survivors, think, reflect,

address and beyond plastering wounds with marketing money and

propaganda, find the source and fix it.

Breaking through the sometimes involuntary barriers that the necessities of

belonging sets as a duty is a feat on its own. But to speak of the taboos, to

dare bring some fresh air in the many closed rooms of the shut down minds

of the oppressing groups, conveniently confusing tradition with unnatural

selection is going to poke at some set minds (or is it mindsets). There is a

lot to fix in a world painted white to cover the cut, bleeding and broken

hearts, minds and skins.

To speak of these things beyond time, race, religion and gender, even though

expressed within these, showcases them as human issues. After all, the

woman I would want to be is the world I would want to live in.

As a consequence, even more expectations were raised for the completion

of this work-in-progress after the post.

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Events

Monday 28th January 2019

Play Reading

4:00 pm - 4.45 pm

Weston Room

Event Details

Monday 28th January 2019

Play Reading

Woman of my Dreams is a musical. On the 28th we are sharing a spoken version with a little razzle dazzle to give you a pleasant evening. 

4:00 pm - 4.45 pm

Weston Room

Monday 28th January 2018

Tea and Refreshments

4.45 pm - 5.00 pm

Weston Room

Event Details

Monday 28th January 2018

Tea and Refreshments

Time to take a break and complete surveys.

4.45 pm - 5.00 pm

Weston Room

Monday 28th January 2018

Questions and Answers

5.00pm - 5.45 pm

Weston Room

Event Details

Monday 28th January 2018

Questions and Answers

Meet the director and cast. The floor is thrown open to the audience.

5.00pm - 5.45 pm

Weston Room

Contact Us

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M15 4FN, Manchester, Greater Manchester, England, United Kingdom