Balancing the high expectations of the previous generation, the doctrines of their Muslim community, and the demands of secular Western culture, Azeem Bhatti and his wife Saima struggle to straddle the gap between their Pakistani heritage and their British upbringing. Making his professional debut, playwright Hammaad Chaudry explores what it means to be AN ORDINARY MUSLIM. Obie Award winner Jo Bonney directs. With deep compassion, Hammaad brings to life a recognizable and unforgettable family, and with sharp intellect asks potent questions about the challenges of integration and assimilation for immigrants in today’s global world. As witnesses, we will all be forced to confront pressing questions about the nature of belonging and our own internal prejudices about that which is “other.” Hammaad Chaudry is a 2017-18 Tow Foundation Playwright in Residence. An Ordinary Muslim is the recipient of an Edgerton Foundation New Play Award and a Laurents/Hatcher Foundation Theater Development Grant. Scenic design by Neil Patel Costume design by Susan Hilferty Lighting design by Lap Chi Chu Sound design by Elisheba Ittoop Fight direction by Thomas Schall Dialect coach Dawn-Elin Fraser Stage Management by Lori Ann Zepp
Playwright Hammaad Chaudry is a 2017-18 Tow Foundation Playwright in Residence! This grant includes a full-time salary for Hammaad, funds to support his integration in our day-to-day operations, and support of his production of AN ORDINARY MUSLIM.
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Purva is an actress of film, television and stage and also a deviser of new work. Theatre: Uncommon Sense (Tectonic Theatre Project), Idiot (HERE), Veil’d (Women’s Project), There or Here (Hypothetical Theater), Parts & Parts of Stitches (MTWorks), The Rise of Dorothy Hale (St. Luke’s), East is East (Manhattan Theater Club & New Group). As an Associate Artist with Target Margin Theatre: Reread Another, The Tempest, Second Language, Ten Blocks on the Camino Real, Old Comedy, These Very Serious Jokes, The 5 Hysterical Girls Theorem, The Seagull, Sonoma. Film: Sully, Equity, Kumare, Cosmopolitan, Green Card Fever, American Desi. TV: “Madam Secretary,” “Person of Interest,” “Law & Order: SVU,” “Nurse Jackie,” “The Good Wife,” “Unforgettable.” Purva hosted “Natural Reboot” for ZeeLiving and co-created the upcoming web series “Shrinkage.” Other upcoming theatre in 2018 includes Dance Nation at Playwrights Horizons and Assembled Identity at HERE Arts Center. Purva is a founding member of Disha Theatre and a member of The Actor’s Center Workshop Company. She studied at Williams College, The British American Drama Academy and the Public Theatre Shakespeare Lab.
Ranjit Chowdhry is an actor/writer from India… through Canada and the USA… a work in transit one might say. On stage Ranjit has performed The Mesmerist with Steppenwolf and Rafta, Rafta with The New Group. Film credits include The Last Holiday, Mississippi Malasa, Girl Six, Such a Long Journey, Fire, The Perez Family, and Bollywood/Hollywood. Television: a recurring role on “Cosby,” “Prison Break,” and “The Office.” In India, Ranjit has performed in a dozen or so Bollywood films and later formed his own theater group Stages. As a writer Ranjit has adapted R.K. Narayan’s Malgudi Days for international TV. He also wrote and starred in Deepa Mehta’s Sam and Me, runner up for the Caméra F’Or at the 1991 Cannes Film Festival.
Recent theater: Peer Gynt and the Norwegian Hapa Band (Ma-Yi Theater), Scenes From Court Life, or, the whipping boy and his prince by Sarah Ruhl (Yale Rep, world premiere). Broadway: Company (2006, Tony Award, Best Revival of a Musical). Off-Broadway includes: CSC, Playwrights Horizons, New York Theatre Workshop, The Public/NYSF, Women’s Project, Ma-Yi, MCC, others. Regional includes: George St. Playhouse, Berkshire Theater Festival, Old Globe, McCarter Theater, Cincinnati Playhouse, Yale Repertory, Long Wharf, Arena Stage, Playmakers Repertory. Recent TV: “Chicago Med,” “Minority Report,” “Madam Secretary,” “Major Crimes,” “Forever,” “Elementary,” “Nurse Jackie,” “Being Mary Jane,” “Damages.” Video games: “Gears of War 4” (President Jinn, voice). Film: The Clique, The War Within, Heights, Black Knight, and Robot Stories. Recipient: 2017 NYU Diversity Faculty Mentorship, 2014 Lunt-Fontanne Fellow. 52nd Street Project volunteer. MFA in Acting from NYU.
Sanjit was last seen Off-Broadway in the role of “Aeneas” in Troilus and Cressida for Shakespeare in the Park and in the role of “Jeff Schrader” in the Public Theater’s Dry Powder, opposite Claire Danes, John Krasinski, and Hank Azaria, directed by Tommy Kail. The role earned him Lucille Lortel and Outer Critic’s Circle Award nominations for “Outstanding Featured Actor in a Play”. Other credits include: Broadway: War Horse (Tony Award, Best Play). Off-Broadway: Macbeth, Measure for Measure (NYSF/Public Theater); Awake and Sing! (NAATCO); The Ragged Claws (Cherry Lane); The Little Foxes (NYTW). Regionally: The Cherry Orchard, A Midsummer Night’s Dream and Indian Ink. Film/TV: After Party, The Girl is in Trouble, The Company Men, August, Arranged, “Blindspot,” “Time After Time,” “Madam Secretary,” “Blacklist,” “Elementary,” “High Maintenance,” “Homeland,” “Blue Bloods,” “The Good Wife.” M.F.A. NYU Graduate Acting.
Broadway: Lucky Guy (w/Tom Hanks), The Father (w/Frank Langella), An Enemy of the People (MTC). Off-Broadway: Tamburlaine the Great (TFANA), As You Like It (NYSF), Golden Age (MTC). World Premieres: You’re Blues Ain’t Sweet Like Mine written and directed by Ruben Santiago-Hudson, a cautionary tale by christopher oscar pena, K.M.T. adapted by Keith Reddin. TV: “Shades of Blue,” “Blue Bloods,” “TURN: Washington’s Spies,” “The Mysteries of Laura,” “Unforgettable,” “The Good Wife,” “ER.” Film: Stranger in the Dunes (Official Selection 2017 Raindance Film Festival), Upcoming – The Magnificent Meyersons. Training: M.F.A. NYU Graduate Acting, B.F.A. UMN/Guthrie Theater.
Broadway: A Meeting by the River. Regional: Homebody/Kabul at Berkeley Repertory Theatre; Guantanamo: Honor Bound to Defend Freedom at The Culture Project in NYC, Studio Theatre in Washington DC, Brava Theatre in San Francisco and a Special Reading at the Sam Rayburn Annex in the US House of Representatives; BAM, La Mama, Vineyard Theatre, Cincinnati Playhouse, George Street Playhouse and NY Stage & Film. Films: Hidalgo (Yusuf), Gandhi (Godse, the Assassin), The Peacemaker (Dr. Taraki), Night & The City, Traffic, Men in Black, and Making Mr. Right. TV: “Vestige of Honor” (MOW), “Littlest Victims” (MOW), “Dark Angel,” “Boston Legal,” “Tattingers” and “Tales From The Dark Side.” MFA, Graduate Acting, NYU Tisch School of the Arts.
Off-Broadway: The Winter’s Tale (The Public Theater – Mobile Unit), Hamlet (Sheen Center), Ultimate Beauty Bible (Page 73), Frontieres Sans Frontieres (Bushwick Starr), This Is It How It Ends (59E59 Summer Shorts), Mechanics of Love (ToByFor Productions). Regional: Our Town (Portland Center Stage); Hapgood (Williamstown Theatre Festival); The Philadelphia Story, As You Like It (Chautauqua Theatre Company). Film: Bikini Moon, Dastaar (SXSW, IndyFest), Tourists (Nantucket, CAAM, NJFF), Open Roads (Nantucket). Television: “Blindspot,” “The Blacklist” (NBC); “Madam Secretary” (CBS); and “Younger” (TV Land). Sathya was the 2013 Princess Grace Award Winner (Grace Le Vine Award) and is a proud volunteer at the 52nd Street Project. He is a native of St. Louis, MO. MFA: NYU.
NYTW: Homebody/Kabul by Tony Kushner (World Premiere) also at Mark Taper Forum and BAM. Selected NYC Theatre: The American Pilot (MTC Drama Desk nomination: featured actress),Stuff Happens (The Public US Premiere), O, Jerusalem (The Flea). Selected Regional: The House of Bernarda Alba (Mark Taper Forum). Selected UK Theatre: Borderline (Royal Court and Joint Stock Theatre Co.). Film/TV:
My Beautiful Laundrette (Dir. Stephen Frears), Girl Six (Dir. Spike Lee), “Law and Order,” “The Good Wife.” Co-Founder Kali Theatre Co. London. Training: Royal Court Youth Theatre, London.
An Ordinary Muslim marks playwright Hammaad Chaudry’s professional debut. He is currently a Van Lier Fellow at New Dramatists, a NYTW Usual Suspect, member of The Public Theater’s Emerging Writers Group 2017 and recipient of the New Playwrights Award from Playwrights’ Studio, Scotland. He is also a graduate of the Royal Court Theatre’s Young Writers Programme in London where his work was selected for the Young Writers Festival and Unheard Voices competition. He holds an MFA in Playwriting from Columbia University and hails from Edinburgh, Scotland.
Premieres of plays by: Alan Ball, Eric Bogosian, Culture Clash, Eve Ensler, Jessica Goldberg, Danny Hoch, Neil LaBute, Warren Leight, Martyna Majok, Lynn Nottage, Dael Orlandersmith, Suzan-Lori Parks, Darci Picoult, John Pollono, Will Power, David Rabe, Jose Rivera, Seth Zvi Rosenfeld, Christopher Shinn, Diana Son, Universes, Naomi Wallace, Michael Weller. Productions of plays by: Caryl Churchill, Nilo Cruz, Anna Deavere Smith, Charles Fuller, Lisa Loomer, Carey Perloff, Lanford Wilson. Productions directed at: ART; PS 122; The Public Theater; NYTW; Second Stage; Goodman Theatre; La Jolla; MCC; Geffen Playhouse; WTF; McCarter Theater; Playwrights Horizons; Arena Stage; Mark Taper Forum; Signature (NY); Long Wharf; The New Group; CSC; The Royal Court & Almeida; Edinburgh Festival; The Market Theatre, Johannesburg; Cine 13, Paris. Lortel Awards for Best Musical and Best Revival; Drama Desk nominee (Direction) for By the Way, Meet Vera Stark; Audelco Award (Direction) for Father Comes Home from the Wars; Obie Award for Sustained Excellence of Direction; Lilly Award. Editor of Extreme Exposure (TCG).
NYTW: Slavs, Quills, The Heart is a Lonely Hunter and many more. Recently: Time and the Conways (Roundabout), Father Comes Home From the Wars Parts I, II, III (Royal Court London). Film/TV: Mughal E Azam (NCPA Mumbai and Dehli), Dil Dhadakne Do (Excel), “The Path” (Hulu), “Little Boxes” (Netflix), “In Treatment” (HBO).
NYTW: Most Fabulous Story…, Dirty Blonde, The Devils, My Children! My Africa!. Broadway: Wicked (Tony, OCC, Drama Desk Awards), Spring Awakening, Present Laughter, Into the Woods (all Tony nominated). Chairman: NYU/Tisch Grad/Design. Off-Broadway: 102 productions. Regional: 147 productions. Opera: Metropolitan. Dance: Alvin Ailey. International: including 26 with Athol Fugard. Concerts: Taylor Swift. Circus: Barnum and Bailey.
NYTW: Shopping and Fucking, Love’s Fowl, Tillers. Off-Broadway: The Wolves (Playwrights Realm, Lincoln Center), Father Comes Home From the Wars Parts I, II, III (The Public). Regional: Mark Taper Forum, Geffen Playhouse, Oregon Shakespeare Festival, La Jolla Playhouse, Old Globe, Berkeley Repertory Theatre, ART, ACT, Goodman Theatre, many others. lapchichu.com
NYTW debut. Off-Broadway: Hello, from the Children of Planet Earth (Upcoming: Playwrights Realm); Duat, Washeteria (Soho Rep); And I And Silence (Signature); Stuffed, The Architecture of Becoming (WP); Stuffed (Westside); The Bachelors (Lesser America). Regional: Guthrie, Oregon Shakespeare Festival, Steppenwolf, Alliance, Two River, Ford’s, Folger, Woolly Mammoth, The Kennedy Center.
NYTW: Red Speedo, Othello. Broadway: Over 70 shows including Jitney, Death of a Salesman, War Horse, The King and I, Romeo and Juliet. Off-Broadway: Hamlet, Mother Courage; The Cost of Living, Murder Ballad (MTC), Waiting for Godot, Look Back in Anger (Roundabout). Operas: Tosca; Nozze Di Figaro (The Met Opera).
NYTW: Sojourners, Her Portmanteau, Nat Turner in Jerusalem. Broadway: Once on this Island, Waitress, Finding Neverland. Off-Broadway: Barbeque, Our Lady of Kibeho, Invisible Thread. National Tour: Waitress, The Gershwin’s Porgy and Bess, Finding Neverland. Site Specific: Ragtime on Ellis Island. Head of Voice and Speech for New Studio on Broadway/NYU.
NYTW debut. Broadway: Jay Johnson: The Two and Only. Selected Off-Broadway: Lips Together, Teeth Apart; By the Way, Meet Vera Stark (Second Stage); Yen (MCC); Daphne’s Dive (Signature Theatre); Father Comes Home From the Wars Parts I,II,III (Public Theater Lab); A Small Fire (Playwrights Horizons). Regional: Seder, The Body of an American. (Hartford Stage).