Blueprint Medea, which gets its world premiere this month at the Finborough Theatre, is the first play in English that features a character based on the “Kurdish Angelina Jolie”. Who was the late Asia Ramazan Antar? Gen up here – and then get booking!
Asia Ramazan Antar was a fighter in Kurdish Women’s Protection Units who became a symbol for the feminist struggle in the conflict against ISIS in Syrian Kurdistan (known to Kurds as Rojava). After photos of her went viral online, she was dubbed the “Kurdish Angelina Jolie” by Western media because of her resemblance to the Hollywood actress. She was killed during a suicide attack in Manbij, Syria on 30 August 2016.
Antar & the female fighters
Inspiring women inspiring theatre
The title character in Blueprint Medea, written and directed by Julia Pascal, is inspired by Antar and based on interviews with other Kurds now living in the UK.
In the play, a modern version of Euripides’ ancient Greek tragedy, Medea (played by Ruth D’Silva) is a Kurdish freedom fighter who escapes the Turkish military and arrives at UK Border Control on a forged passport. While living on the margins of London life and working illegally as a cleaner in a gym, she meets Jason-Mohammed (Max Rinehart), the son of Iraqi immigrants. Their attraction results in the birth of twin boys.
Medea believes that she has finally found a new home, a new family and a new life. But when Jason’s father decides his son must marry an Iraqi cousin, Medea realises she will lose her sons and her safe haven. What does she have to lose by avenging herself?
Blueprint Medea runs from 21 May to 8 June 2019 at the Finborough Theatre, 118 Finborough Road, London SW10 9ED, with performances Tuesdays to Saturdays at 7.30pm, Saturday and Sunday matinees at 3pm. Tickets are priced £10-£20. CLICK HERE TO PURCHASE!