Art And Culture

Sabri’s Anti-War Play in Portuguese Festival

Sabri’s Anti-War Play in Portuguese FestivalSabri’s Anti-War Play in Portuguese Festival

The play ‘Count to One’ by the Iranian puppet troupe Yas-e-Tamam, will be performed at the 16th International Festival of Puppets and Animated Forms which is currently underway in Portugal.

The first Iranian work in the Portuguese festival, the play will have two performances on May 19 and 20, Mehr News Agency reported.

Led by theater director and playwright Zahra Sabri, the troupe has earlier staged the show at international festivals in Poland, Germany, Sweden, Russia, France and Spain.

Based on the works by the renowned Persian poet Omar Khayyam, ‘Count to One’ has no dialogues. It is about three soldiers who receive orders to bomb a city but they refuse and instead start making sculptures with mud as it begins to rain. However, rain destroys all in the end.

As the director said, her work is an anti-war play. “Khayyam talks about the present time, living in the moment and loving in his poems. What I perceived from his poetry is creation, life and change. So I sought to show my hope toward life and hatred of war in the play,” Sabri said.

Khayyam (1048-1131) was a Persian mathematician, astronomer, philosopher and poet, who is widely considered to be one of the most influential scientists of the middle ages.

Khayyam’s poetry is known to the world mostly through the English translation of his quatrains (Rubaiyat) by English poet and writer Edward FitzGerald (1809-1883) who made Khayyam the most famous poet of the East in the West.

The props on the stage include pottery wheels, water and mud. “Making things out of mud and their return to dust in the end is to show the audience that nothing remains forever,” said Reza Bahrami, one of the actors.

Mohsen Shahpiri and Hossein Divandari are also in the cast.

The Portuguese event which runs through May 22 has brought professional puppet companies from across the globe to present their latest creations to various age groups. A total of 20 groups are attending this year’s festival which is one of the major theater events in Portugal. On the sidelines, conferences, exhibitions and workshops are held.