Play to tackle Islamophobia

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muslim playA new play is coming to Liverpool with the aim of tackling racial and Islamic prejudice in modern-day Britain.

The playwright, Adam Hughes, is bringing his first feature-length play to tour the UK, funded by Arts Council England. ‘True Colours’ will be performed at Liverpool’s Lantern Theatre from 8th-9th of November.

Mr Hughes told JMU Journalism: “I think it is extremely important that the people of Liverpool come to see the play. Liverpool is one of the biggest and most diverse cities in the UK and so many of those living here will be able to relate to the play’s themes.”

He said he was inspired to write the play after watching a documentary about the English Defence League (EDL). He wondered whether or not members of the EDL would have the same attitude towards Islam if they got to know somebody from that culture.

The play tells the story of a proud Yorkshireman who believes his community is changing, and not for the better, in particular because of the increasing Asian population. However, his views are suddenly challenged when he suffers from a fall and receives home help, in the form of a young Pakistani nurse.

Alongside the performances, the cast and crew will be holding free workshops at The Florrie building in Liverpool, on 9th November, as a means of tackling the themes that the play evokes.

Mr Hughes said: “The workshops are essentially providing people with a safe platform to discuss the issues of racial and Islamic prejudice, as opposed to simply shying away from them. In other cities we are working with local mosques and Islamic groups and so would really like to do the same in Liverpool.

“The fact that we can use theatre is a unique yet extremely influential way to tackle what appears to be a growing problem.

“In my opinion, the only way we can overcome an issue is if we sit down and discuss it and try to understand why it exists in the first place. If we can do that, then we will hopefully prevent the risk of ourselves harnessing certain prejudices or frustrations towards others.”

About Shannyn Quinn, JMU Journalism