A Bush Theatre production
Zafar flees homophobic persecution in Pakistan to seek asylum in the UK. Londoner Bilal (or Billy as he prefers to be known) is ground down by years of Grindr and the complexity of being a brown gay man. Their worlds are about to change forever.
Moving through casual hook-ups to the UK’s hostile environment, Waleed Akhtar’s (Kabul Goes Pop) sharp-witted and devastating new play charts the parallel lives of two gay Pakistani men. This story of who wins in the luck of the life’s draw is a new Bush Theatre commission.
THE P WORD
by Waleed Akhtar
Directed by Anthony Simpson-Pike
Set and Costume Designer – Max Johns
Composer – Niraj Chag
Lighting Designer – Elliot Griggs
Sound designer – XANA
Voice and dialect coach – Gurkiran Kaur
Costume Supervisor – Maariyah Sharjil
Movement Director – Rachael Nanyonjo
Casting Director – Jatinder Chera
Cast – Esh Alladi and Waleed Akhtar
9 September – 22 October
‘I’m like the best version of brown. I’m not even into Pakistanis and I’d probably hook up with myself.’
Deirdre O’Halloran, Literary Manager of the Bush Theatre said, ‘The P Word is the story of an unlikely friendships in a time where it feels like we’re all increasingly divided, there is something quietly revolutionary about the people who manage to reach across barricades and find ways of communicating. The play started out as a seed commission at the Bush, with Waleed writing a full first draft in just a week and the team was so excited and inspired by its activism, truthfulness, and hopefulness. It’s a queer story that could not be more relevant to Britain today.’
The Bush are working with Micro Rainbow to realise this production. Micro Rainbow opened the first safe house in the United Kingdom dedicated solely to LGBTQI asylum seekers and refugees. https://microrainbow.org/
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