Whispers International: Online fundraiser production to support Beirut’s theatre community

A new online fundraiser production has been announced to help support Beirut’s theatre community.

In the devastating Lebanon 2020 explosion, the largest non-nuclear blast in history, all of Beirut’s theatres were destroyed.

Whispers International will unite British playwrights with acclaimed Lebanese artists; all the proceeds of this online production will go towards helping the theatres rebuild and to support emerging Lebanese artists to create art once more.

Whispers International features globally celebrated Lebanese actors including Nadine Labaki (Director of Academy Award, BAFTA, Golden Globe and César Award nominated & Cannes Jury Prize award-winning Capernaum), Georges Khabbaz (Murex D’or, Festival de Molière and Rotterdam Film Festival award winning actor) and Rita Hayek (lead actress in Academy Award nominated The Insult).

They’re joined by Nada Abou Farhat, Talal El Jurdi, Bernadette Houdeib, Badih Abou Chacra, Dory Al-Samarany, Bshara Atallah, Sany Abdul Baki, Josyane Boulos, Agatha Ezzedine and Hagop Der Ghougassian.

Six British playwrights – Mike Elliston, Geraldine Brennan, Kate Webster, Angela Harvey, Kim Hardy and John Jesper – have offered their texts free of charge to support their fellow theatre professionals in Lebanon. The production is directed by Beirut-based, award-winning theatre director, Lina Abiad.

Addressing important issues including mental health, political injustice, women’s rights and LGBTQ+ rights, the monologues have been adapted to mirror the current situation in Lebanon and have been translated into Lebanese Arabic with English and French subtitles.

Whispers International will stream at 7PM on Saturday, 24 April with tickets priced at £12 available online here.

Agatha Ezzedine, actor and co-producer said: “Beirut has always been the ultimate muse to many artists, and it would be heart-breaking to see it lose its spark and stop making art.”

Picture: Courtesy of Taha Shanouha

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About the author: Josh Darvill

Josh is Stageberry's editor with over five years of experience writing about theatre in the West End and across the UK. Prior to following his passion for musicals, he worked for more than a decade as a TV journalist.