Viva Palestine! WHAT’S CHANGED?  WHAT’S NEEDED? Palestinians from the performing arts speak out to an international audience!




Artists from Gaza, Bethlehem, Beit Jala, Jenin, Ramallah, Nazareth, Haifa, Jerusalem and elsewhere reflect on new developments


Online Gathering: Friday 18th June 4pm(UK)/6pm(Palestine)Y

You are invited!

Speakers we have asked to contribute:

Ahmed Masoud (Chair), writer, London, originally from Gaza

Marina Barham, Director of Al Harah in Beit Jala 

Hossam Madhoun, Theatre for Everybody, Gaza

Ahmed Al-Aydi, Theatre Day, Gaza

Iman Aoun, Director of Ashtar in Gaza and Ramallah 

Faten Khoury, performing artist from Nazareth 

Ahmed Tobasi, Director of the Freedom Theatre in Jenin 

Bashar Murkus, Khashabi, Haifa

Suheil Khoury, Shafaq, Jerusalem Arts Network (to be confirmed) 

Ismail Khalidi, Visiting Artist in Chile

Munther Bannourah, young artist at Al Harah

Yazan Zubaidy, young cultural arts manager at Al Harah

Jamal Al Rozzi, Theatre for Everybody, Gaza 

Abdelfattah Abusrour, Al Rowwad, Bethlehem 

This free event is hosted by Az Theatre in consultation with the Palestinian Performing Arts Network

Get your ticket from Eventbrite:

If you don’t want to use Eventbrite contact us direct on info@aztheatre.org.ukw











Messages of love and support to the people of Gaza 12 May -13 May 2021

Messages to the people of Gaza to be distributed by Hossam Madhoun and Jamal Al Rozzi as widely as possible. 

Sent by people between 12 noon Wednesday 12th May and 12 noon Thursday 13th May 2021 in response to an appeal from Az Theatre.

Jonathan Chadwick, Az Theatre:

The people of Gaza and Palestinians everywhere are in our hearts and minds.  We know that the worse thing is the feeling that you are isolated and the people of the world are ignoring what you are going through.  We want you to know that we hold you dear and believe in your human right to peace, freedom and justice.  We are sending our love, solidarity and support.

Yannis Thavoris, scenographer/theatre designer, London:

Dear people of Gaza and Palestine, We are watching what is going on with sadness and anger and we are thinking of you. We are sending you our thoughts of love and support, as well as the hope that the world will finally help end the injustice you have been suffering. Freedom, Prosperity and Peace!

Belinda, London:

Thinking and praying for you all at this time.

Jan Woolf, writer, Cricklewood, North London:

I feel so desperately sorry for what is happening.   There was a wonderful motorcade coming down the Edgware Road in North London a few days ago. Buses, cars, Palestinian flags flying. I was waving back from the side of the road , so were lots of others.  Many, many of are thinking of you and your struggle for equality.   How much are you expected to take? Love.

Sue Caro, UK:

Dear People of Gaza, Please know, despite the disgusting silence of the UK’s corrupt government, many people in the UK are horrified, angry and deeply distressed by the latest Israeli bloodthirsty acts of cruelty and aggression. I support an independent, free Palestine, the right to self determination and the right of return. I oppose Israel’s actions and I speak as a direct descendent of Rabbi Yusef Caro who in the 16th Century drew up the rules by which Orthodox Jews still live today. Sending strength and solidarity.

Martin Brown, London:

Dear friends and comrades. You are in our hearts and minds in this terrible time of uncertainty and danger. We will be campaigning here in the U.K. for international pressure to stop the bombing and we will stand with you until Palestine is free. 

Noel Burch, Paris, France:

This is my message of heartfelt support to all Palestinians… I live in a country, France,  where the mainstream  media and the authorities are so vulnerable to pressure from the Zionist lobby that we are only tepidly informed of the horrors you people are suffering at the hands of Zionist imperialism… We too feel so helpless…. True enough, I feel slightly useful as I collaborate with an anti-Zionist and pro-Palestinian website, Alain Gresh’s OrientXXI, so my support is a little more active than that of most of us… But what more can I say?  Grit your teeth and keep your heads down….YOU’LL WEATHER THIS AS YOU HAVE WEATHERED YOUR TRAGIC HISTORY! Love.

Jonathan Arndell, Wales:

We are about to begin a digital collaboration with Eltiqa.com (Nesma Naseem) with funding from Wales Arts International. I am currently reading ‘Open Gaza’ edited by the late Michael Sorkin.

In our small way, through the ‘Wales Palestine – creative exchange’ project, we hope to provide some solidarity and support to Palestinian artists through a mutual exchange with Wales-based artists.

Anthony Meyer, London:

Dear Hossam and Jamal, We are all thinking of you. I have long been a friend of Jonathan Chadwick and have always enjoyed hearing about and witnessing the wonderful work you have done in Gaza. Through those plays acted out by the children, role playing and sliding over the stage floor and your dramatic staging of Tolstoy’s War and Peace I feel I know you. Would that there were words adequate to describe the worst news that now comes from Gaza but we hear that you are safe which means a lot. Thank you. My thoughts and prayers go with you and your families. With love.

Yosefa Loshitzky, London:

Dear Jamal Al Rozzi and Hossam Madhoun,I would like to express my solidarity with you and all the other people in Gaza who are now subject to such a barbaric attack on top of the suffering and the injustice that has been inflicted on them (you) over the years by the State of Israel.  I was born in Israel but moved to London a few years ago in an act of defiance against the ongoing oppression of the Palestinians by Israel.  I am lucky and privileged to have the opportunity to choose, an option that does not exist for the people in Gaza and Palestine who are under an oppressive and racist colonial rule.  Despite my acknowledged privilege I feel the pain of you and your people and I want you to know that.  My family (sister, nieces and nephews) lives in Israel and some of them in the south of the country and for obvious human reasons I worry about them, their safety and well being.  Yet, my heart and mind are with you, the people of Palestine, and not with the Israelis who perpetrate an ongoing Nakba on you. With best wishes for you and the people of Gaza and Palestine.  Keep safe and well.

Anna Carteret, London:

This is just to say that I am thinking of you all – and hope you find safety

for you and your families… You are not alone…

Zohar Chamberlain Regev:

As an Israeli citizen I am deeply concerned about the violence my government is using to oppress and destroy your lives. I know that most Israelis don’t even think about the Palestinians, especially those living in the Gaza Strip as fellow human beings. The bombs when they fall on you are terrible, but the slow death with no future under continued blockade and decades long repressive occupation is much worse. I wish you strength and look forward to the day when your place as the people of this land will be fully restored.

Laila Alj, London:

Dear Jamal and Hossam, My heart and thoughts are with you, Gaza and all of Palestine at this time. Sending my love, solidarity and support from London. I had the pleasure of meeting you and working with artists in Gaza years ago now through Jonathan. I hope the people of Gaza can find some comfort in knowing that there is outrage, love and support out there. All my love.

Ruth Lass, London:

Dear ones, I stand in love and solidarity with you through this time of horror and suffering 

Please know you are not forgotten – we hold you deep in our hearts. As a jewish person I weep and rage against the terrible injustice, cruelty and violence that is waged upon you in my name. 

Justice, Peace, Freedom and Love for all Palestinians.

Lynne Segal, London:

Solidarity with Palestinian resistance, at this terrible time, & all times!!

Miriam Margolyes, London:

Dear friends, These are terrible times.  I’m in London seeing on TV the horrors you’re experiencing and feeling sickened by the brutality. I am a Jew, born in Oxford so ashamed of the Israelis. We are not all so wicked. I send you all my love – one day you will have your land again.  We work for that.  My heartfelt wishes for your safety.

Teresa Bailey:

Dear people of Gaza and Palestinians in ’48, the West Bank and in exile, are in our hearts and minds especially at this brutal and terrifying time. The world is watching and seeing what is happening to you. You may feel isolated but the people of the world are aware of what you are going through.  We honour your human rights to peace, freedom and justice.  We send you our love, solidarity and support.

Sarah Pirozek, London:

I am sending a message of support and love to the people of Gaza during tis incredibly frightening difficult time. xoxo

Michaela Crimmin, London:

Dear Jamal and Hossam, We are HORRIFIED to see the news and it is absolutely unbearable to imagine what you, your families, your friends, and everyone is going through.  Perhaps you remember back in April 2014 you were part of a conference we did at the Royal College of Art, with your involvement made possible by Jonathan. We had an amazing response to your participation. Things sounded so bad then and so much worse now. I wish our hopeless prime minister Boris Johnson would speak out but at least people are protesting here and the news is coming through loud and clear. Sending you love and solidarity and of course urgently hoping for better news from Gaza, and for all Palestinians.

Diana Mills:

In Solidarity: Dear friends in Gaza, I just want you all to know that I am keeping you in my heart and prayers at this terrible time. Please know that you are not forgotten. My name is Diana and I live in London and am ashamed of the history that my country has inflicted on you. With love and blessings and hope for a new and beautiful future.

Summer Brenner, California:

We pray that liberty and justice will soon come to you, the Palestinian people. We send our love, solidarity, and support doing this terrible time.

Anne Vinden, Spain: 

I’m very grateful to Jonathan for allowing me to do what I’ve so longed to do: somehow reach out to you all.  Be one of the many many voices doing that.

George Killingsworth, Berkeley, California:

in this time of siege…holding our brothers and sisters in GAZA/PALESTINE close to the heart…. your pain is our pain…together with you, we hunger and thirst for peace and justice and FREEDOM. much much love.

Victoria Brittain, London:

Dear friends and families in Gaza, We here in London are watching with horror the replay of earlier Israeli atrocities poured on Gaza. I saw the tragic aftermath of Cast Lead on an unforgettable visit of deep emotion and solidarity to Gaza city. And the bravery and humanity of Gaza’s people which I have seen in many visits over 30 years is one of the inspirations of my life. You are in so many hearts here in London and around the world. I am a journalist, playwright and author and I will be spreading your story wherever possible. Solidarity for ever, Warmly.

Steven Rose, London:

Once again the Israeli war machine is wreaking havoc and terror on the defenceless citizens of Gaza, whilst the rest of the world looks on, refusing or powerless to intervene. Our thoughts, of love and solidarity, are with you all, and we salute your spirit and resilience.

Elizabeth Hodgkin:

Dear friends, I think of Gaza, which I know and love and visited often for human rights work; now retired I live in a village near Shakespeare’s birthplace; I send you solidarity and love from me, family, and friends.

Ra’ad and Lydia Mahmoud:

Sending you all our love from Durham, UK! You are stronger than we can imagine and you are the inspirations to us all. Our solidarity to you and we will continue fighting for your freedom and the freedom of all Palestinians! All our love.

Rama Mani and Alexander Schieffer, France:

Dear Friends and Colleagues, It is deeply saddening that the final days of Ramadan have been marred by escalating violence in Jerusalem and Gaza, and by continued bloodshed in Afghanistan, Yemen, Syria and far too many Muslim countries. May we regain trust that it is possible to envision ‘mission impossible’… and to achieve integral transformation, despite all odds. 

Harriet Walter, London:

Dear friends, I am thinking of you in this fearful time and hoping that the international community can bring about a ceasefire very soon. Stay safe and strong.

Tina and Robert Golden, Bridport, UK:

Robert and I speak of the situation in Gaza and Palestine, we listen to the news, we watch and read what we can and we receive reports from our young friends in Gaza with their own photographs of what the people are going through.  You are in our hearts and we hope you and your families and friends manage to stay safe and that soon this madness will end. 

Radmila Mileusnic, UK:

I witnessed the war and destruction of my country, former Yugoslavia. The cruelty imposed on people of Gaza and Palestine reminds me painfully of the insufferable injustice the whole world is showing by doing nothing to stop torturing the citizens of Gaza. I feel terribly ashamed to be unable to help! Your friend.  

Professor Michael York and family, London:

To the People of Gaza and Occupied Palestine, We are wishing to our utmost for your safety and desperately hope that a positive resolution and permanent outcome will very soon emerge from the unnecessary and dangerous conflict  that is presently underway. 

Bonny Nahmias, California:

Dear Jamal Al Rozzi, Hossam Madhoum, their family and friend, My name is Bonny and I live in California. I feel very upset about what you are going through. It breaks my heart to think of all the damage and death caused by evil forces. I want you to know that many Israelis, like myself, do not support these war crimes, propaganda, and hate.  We also do not support the occupation and wish for justice and  liberation for the Palestinian people. I will be praying for the safety of you and your family. Peace and love.

Ama Bolton:

People of Gaza, you are not forgotten. I hold you in my heart and wish you well.

Shan Barclay, Norwich, England:

Palestine and Palestinians have my total support at this time of need and crisis. Netenyahu and his band of thugs must not be allowed to get away with this criminal assault nupon a totally innocent people. In solidarity

Michael Shanahan:

Very best wishes to all who suffer in Gaza and to all who experienced the many years of blockade. Sincerely.

Sarah Jacob:

Oh people of Gaza and Palestinians everywhere, you are in my heart and mind. I want you to know that I cherish you and believe in your human right to peace, freedom and justice. You are not alone and I am not ignoring your call. I send you my love, solidarity and support.

Kate Sherringer:

Our hearts go out to you in Palestine. We cannot imagine how horrible the situation is there at the moment. Hold on, be strong, it may seem that you are alone but many people in the world are praying for you in many different ways.  Our love and respect,  Kate and Shaun from West Wales. Members of Amnesty and West Wales Friends of Palestine.

Taghred Esanhouri, a Sudanese filmmaker living in London:

Dear Friends in Gaza and all of Palestine, I think of your plight with tears in my eyes. It’s a cliché but, it’s also true that, the darkest moment is the one just before the dawn. Stand fast. Your courage will be the stuff of legends hundreds of years from now. I pray that Allah increases you and your oppressors in wisdom/ Rushd. I pray that your oppressors’ hearts are cleansed with the power of Allah’s loving light so that they are able to accept you as their brothers and extend to you the dignity and compassion they expect for themselves.

Maysoon Pachachi, London:

We are with you dear friends  in Gaza, Jerusalem and elsewhere in Palestine. We stand in solidarity with your aspirations for life, freedom, justice and peace, which are your inalienable rights. Your fortitude, generosity of heart and grace under fire are an example to us all. With love. 

Lilla Duignan, Bristol, UK:

Dear friends, we hold you in our hearts and minds at such a tremendously challenging, frightening and unpredictable time. Please know you are not alone, we do care and we are with you in spirit. With love and empowerment.

Mona Damluji & Jia Ching Chen, Santa Barbara, California:

Dear Jamal and Hossam, You, your family, neighbors, all of Gaza and all of Palestine are in our hearts on our minds as we witness the atrocities of this horrific siege on your homes and lives. Please know that our eyes are open and our hearts are breaking but remain open to you. We are watching around the clock, sharing news with all our community and demanding accountability from our representatives in the US. Praying for your safety and the well-being of all your loved ones and community. Gaza lives in our hearts today and everyday. In solidarity and love.

Ivana Perić, Zagreb, Croatia:

Dear families and friends and people of Gaza, the words are hard to find in this moment and seem not up to the job of expressing pain, anger, solidarity. It seems so little to say I am sorry, but I am truly sorry to see the pain multiplied in Palestine again. I’d like to say you are not alone, and your struggle is visible and known to the world, your struggle won’t be kept in shadows. I hope you manage to sleep with no fear of bombs, I hope you finally get to live not worrying what tomorrow brings. I will keep you in my thoughts and acts, and keep Gaza and Palestine in my heart. 

Maia Tabet, Beirut, Lebanon:

Gaza love!

Jo Bownas, London:

To the amazing AZ Theatre and all people of Gaza. We are looking in on in horror in these days of terror and destruction. And we are also demanding people of influence in the international community bring pressure to bear to end this crisis. May peace and justice prevail. May you be safe. In solidarity.

Caryl Churchill, London:

Jamal and Hossam, it’s terrible to hear what is happening. I’ve been sent more details than I’d heard on the news here by Medical Aid for Palestinians, and I’ve written to my MP urging her to put pressure on the government here to speak out in condemnation of Israel. I don’t expect it will make much difference, but anyway I am sending love and thinking of you and others there. Many people here have you in their minds and hearts. 

Jonathan Bloom, England:

Dear Gaza, I am sending love and remembrance of a time long ago when i sat on a street in Gaza eating falafals and hoping that life would get better for you all. I am still thinking those thoughts.  My name is Jonathan Bloom and i live by the sea on the south coast of England.

Alan Bernstein, London:

We are watching you with horror and disgust at what is being done to you, with admiration for your courage and strength, and with hope that somehow justice will prevail for you, as it has done in other places and times.

Tanya and Stephen Lowe, Nottingham, England:

Dearest Jamal, Hossam and Safi… Our hearts are with you and your families and all your friends in Gaza in such horrendous times. Every day we are chanting for your safety and your well being….Each day we reach for the incense that sits in the two little pink clay pots you gave Stephen and I on departure from Sibu… so fragile, so beautiful. The scent rises from the incense sticks into the air. Your little vases sit side by side. Stephen and I sit side by side, holding you tight in our prayers…All our love xxxxxxxx

Camilla Power, London:

I am sending solidarity greetings from London to the people of Gaza. The whole world is witness to the terrible crimes of Israel against civilians including the women and children of Gaza. This Eid al-Fitr, we hope and pray for peace and justice to prevail. Love.

Aisha Dennis:

With all our love and solidarity, we send our prayers for your safety, security and justice 

from Britain to Palestine from London to Gaza and Jerusalem.

Jane Orton:

Thinking of you all in this terrible time. Much love.

Reema Pachachi, Oxford, UK:

Dear Palestinian friends, I am Reema Pachachi. I live in Oxford, in the UK. I wake in the morning and hear the news of what is happening to you. It makes me rage, and it makes me cry. I am so sorry you are going through this. Please believe there are many people in the world thinking of you. 

Take care, stay safe. With much love and support.

Sabrina Mahfouz, London, UK:

Our love and thoughts are of little use right now, but we send them and grow them anyway, in the hope that Gaza’s future can be a liberated one and you can flourish in peace and prosperity. Eid Mubarak. We stand with you, we shout with you.

Pauline Melville, London:

Dear Hossam and Jamal (and your friends and families), Many of us here in London are horrified to hear and see what is happening to you all in Gaza.  I want to send you heartfelt support and good wishes for your safety and survival.  I wish there was more we could do than to send you good wishes.  We all send love and want you to be able to live your lives in peace and freedom.  I know that words offer little shelter against bombs but for the moment that is the least I can do. Keep safe and courageous. Very best wishes.

Beau Beausoleil, San Francisco, California USA:

In Solidarity. 

Hannah Beardon, Granada, Spain:

I wish I could do something for Gaza. I will write to my government and I want you all to know that you are in my thoughts and heart.

Teresa Cosgrove, London:

Hello, My name is Teresa, I am an elderly English woman and I live in London. I am angry and sad to see on TV what is happening in Gaza, seeing the Israeli bombing of your homes and people being killed. I hope you can stay safe and that the violence will stop soon. With love and care.

Luka Ostojic, Zagreb, Croatia:

Dear colleagues and friends, I am Luka, a journalist from Zagreb. My friend Ivana Perić forwarded me your call to send our messages of support. I was lucky enough to meet some great people from Palestina who told me a lot about your culture, people, towns and landscapes. Now I am shocked by news I hear from Gaza and I feel helpless and angry about it. I am thinking about my friends, about you and everybody in Gaza. I hope that one day we all could meet and enjoy a peaceful evening in your hometown and I hope that this message could give you at least some kind of comfort. With hugs and best wishes from Croatia,

Maggie Young:

I am sending a message of love and support. I cannot imagine how terrible it must be to be in this unjust horrendous war when you dare not sleep.I hope this nightmare will end soon so you can have peace.

Annie Firbank, London:

This just to tell you how much you are in all our thoughts and prayers, and how solidly we are behind you. The reports are horrendous – you must be needing tremendous guts to get thru it. Please, keep safe, and know that you aren’t  alone – our support for you all is infinite and from the heart. with such love

British Shalom-Salaam Trust, London:

I am writing to you from the peace and safety of London on behalf of the Jewish charity the British Shalom-Salaam Trust.  We are appalled at the violence and cruelty being inflicted on the people of Gaza by the Israeli government and misery.  We think of you all the time and pray that one day the oppression will end and peace and justice will prevail. With our love and concern – especially for your children. Naomi Wayne, Secretary.

Kezia Richardson:

To my sisters and brothers in Palestine, Please know that we are holding you in our hearts. The violent oppression you are subject to is horrific, and we stand with you and for you in demanding an immediate stop to the actions of the Israeli invaders. I am praying for peace for you. With love.

Barbara Iqbal, Manchester, UK:

I’m Barbara Iqbal and I live in Levenshulme, Manchester in the UK. All we can do here is to spread the truth about what Israel is doing now and hope that people will listen and join us in protesting and taking action. Perhaps people who didn’t know will start by sending you love and hope for  the future – as I do right now. x

Janet Marks, New Zealand:

To the people of Palestine and especially to those living in Gaza, I want to send you a message of support and love at this time. I live in New Zealand and am horrified by the reports that are coming out of Gaza and Jerusalem. I want you to know that more and more people are seeing through the Israeli propaganda and calling out their attacks on human rights in Palestine and Israel.

Sherry Gendelman, USA:

Dear People of Gaza, I am an American Jewish woman, though I am not religious. I am sickened by the news of what Israel and its army are doing to all of the people of Gaza. I believe the attacks were started by Israel because the criminal Netenyahu will do anything to win back being the head of state so he does not go to prison for corruption. There is nothing I can say that will alleviate your suffering. I do write to and call my representative to stop aid to Israel. Perhaps there is some comfort in knowing that many more people in the US, and around the world, have come to realize Israel’s crimes against the Palestinian people. For the moment that is all I can offer. I carry the image of your suffering in my mind. I am on the Board of Directors of the Middle East Children’s Alliance and will double my efforts with them. Stay strong please for all of us. 

Gael Alcock, USA:

I am a cellist, living in Berkeley California, USA,  adding my message of deep sadness and outrage over the Israeli bombings and indiscriminate destruction of Palestinian lives and property.  We are getting true reports, and history from our local radio. Some members of congress are speaking up about the truth, despite major media and our president lying about Israel’s exercising its right to self defense. Netanyahu is clearly, openly waging war on civilians. Those who abet villainy bear equal guilt.  As with securing treatment and  vaccines for the pandemic, failure to secure rights for one, threatens the rights of all.

Dr Swee Ang, (Founder of Medical Aid for Palestinians), London:

Dearest Brothers and Sisters in Gaza, By the grace of God on this special day of Eid, may my message of love and support reach you. We learn with tears, anger and agony about all that you have suffered for so many years and now the terrible cruel air strikes again and intensified blockade. In the past I would have immediately come to you, but being banned and imprisoned by the Occupation on previous occasions I know I will only be another number in Givon Prison if I did so. But occupation and exile, and closure of boundaries would only strengthen my love and support for all of you. Nothing can stop us from loving you. We know of your steadfastness, and may we too be steadfast like you. May God continue to give you strength and courage to stand up for justice, to confront cruel oppression, and the abandonment by those in power colluding with the forces of darkness. We are always with you in your journey. I lift you all up to God all day in my prayers. With my friends we will do everything we can to support you. May there always be faith and hope in all of us that you will overcome. Long live Palestine, Long live Gaza, Long live Al-Quds.

Professor Yuzo Itagaki, Japan:

Message to Palestinian People in Gaza, Jerusalem, and the West Bank: I am a Japanese historian as well as a political scientist focusing on the Palestine Question as Professor Emeritus, the University of Tokyo. People of Japan have been seriously worried about the inhumanly cruel plight you are facing. Now, it must be the critical point for humankind to launch decisive measures to terminate the devastatingly unjust situation of deterioration over a century, the too heavy burden for Palestinians.  International community should be keen to reexamine urgently the accumulation of exceptional impunity of genocidal war crimes. Historical remorse of the Japanese concerning the dark past of Japanese colonialism must lead to their resolute stance for supporting the recovery of Palestinians’ dignity, freedom, and peaceful well-being.  As a concerned specialist, I swear to strengthen my activities to defend your legitimate rights to your own security for the sake of humanity.  Your determined ‘sabr’ (perseverance) encourages us worldwide.

Heather Hunt, Sheffield, England:

Dear people living in Gaza, I am really distressed by your suffering under the present bombardment and send you love and support at this time. I want you to know many of us in Sheffield England are protesting about the Israeli bombardment and protesting to our own Government to stop selling arms to Israel. In love and solidarity.

Vivienne Ennemoser, Glasgow, Scotland:

Here in Glasgow, Scotland, we are deeply concerned to hear of the trauma and distress that the Palestinian people are living through yet again. This message is to send love and support and concern for you. Many, many people around the world are thinking of you at this time.

Andrea Hassiba, Artist and Educator, San Francisco, California USA:

The people of Gaza and Palestinians everywhere are in our hearts and minds.  We know that the worse thing is the feeling that you are isolated and the people of the world are ignoring what you are going through.  We want you to know that we hold you dear and believe in your human right to peace, freedom and justice.  We are sending our love, solidarity and support.

Nadine Khoury, USA:

Dear brothers and sisters, My heart bleeds when I see the images of innocent people in Palestine getting shelled, shot, beaten, tear-gassed and evicted. My name is Nadine and I am from Beyrouth, Lebanon but living in San Francisco California and standing in solidarity with the brave people of Palestine. Long live Palestine and the struggle for liberation.

Lorna Wallace, UK:

My name is Lorna and I live in Chesterfield, Derbyshire UK. I am sending all my love, best wishes and hope for better times and freedom for all of Palestine and its people.

Astrid Carlen Helmer & Alexandre Donot, Filmmakers, France:

Dear Jamal and Hossam, Thanks to Jonathan and Maysoon we’re able to send our deepest thoughts to you, your friends, your family and to all the Palestinian people. We all feel desperately useless regarding the horror that you’re going through. Keep in mind that across the world people are joining you in your pain and sorrow. We hope that all this is going to end soon and that you’ll be able to pursue your activity, to maintain your hopes and dreams through theater and your community. Lots of love.

Théâtre de la Grille Verte, Saint Etienne, France:

This message is dedicated to all the people from Theatre for Everybody in Gaza,

We, actors, technicians and volunteers from the Théâtre de la Grille Verte in Saint-Etienne, France, want to share our deepest love and thoughts to your family and friends and to all the people of Gaza. Running a theatre is the most beautiful and difficult thing that can be done. Building this kind of dream in Gaza in not only difficult, it’s miraculous. We strongly hope that the horror and violence happening right now is going to end soon. We believe that your art will be able to heal the wounds of everyone around you. We admire you and send you all our love.

Mary Elliott, Keighley, Yorkshire, UK:

I would like to add my name to the message sent by Jonathan Chadwick. We are thinking of you and wish that peace will come soon. With love.

Joan Curtis, London:

I would like to reiterate the sentiments in this message with all my heart.

Caroline Forbes, Edinburgh, Scotland:

Dear people of Gaza, I’m in Edinburgh Scotland.  Thinking of you in these difficult days.

Wishing you Eid Mubarak. Sending love solidarity and support. This injustice cannot continue. I cannot really imagine of course. I have been in Palestine and picked olives and met some wonderful people over there. I wish you peace and safety and may you be free from suffering.

Stephen Vincent Kobasa, New Haven, USA:

May you find safety. May you find hope. You are not forgotten. 

John Salway UK:

I want to express my personal solidarity with the Palestinian people once again; especially in Gaza, but throughout the land from the river to the sea. I am disgusted by the failure of the BBC here in the UK to tell the truth about the State of Israel’s continuing oppression of the Palestinian people. The fake story of the “two sides” engaging in yet another outbreak of war is once again rolled out to cover up the truth. I saw a video clip from a smart phone, I believe. This showed a Palestinian woman confronting an Israeli Jewish man in her garden. I think this must be somewhere in East Jerusalem. She obviously knew him. She said “Jacob, you are stealing my house.” He said “I am not responsible for stealing it. The State is doing it.” “No, you are stealing it.” “If I don’t steal it, somebody else will.” I think this speaks for itself.

Eckhard Thiemann, London:

This is just a short message to say how shocked, saddened and appalled I am at the unfolding brutal situation and attacks in Gaza, Jerusalem and Palestine. I hope you and your loved ones are unharmed. Your art and commitment to culture is inspirational, and we must keep finding ways for it to continue to shine. With deep sympathy and solidarity.

Jennifer Paterson, Edinburgh, Scotland:

Hello from Edinburgh in Scotland! I am thinking of you all and wishing you peace. I am listening to learn what I can do to help your situation and I speak about your plight to others. I hope it helps a bit to know that others care about you. With much love.

Thomas Pope, London:

Please accept my good wishes and hopes! – that you and your families and friends may not forget the ability of human beings to think clearly when bombs are dropping nearby! In order to survive and to survive well and to keep faith in life’s beauty, however much it may be hidden by forces of ugliness and brutality. Hopes that you will find ways to keep your theatre alive too, in whatever new form, to help children and us all to gain new experiences through art in what it means to be true to ourselves and therefore to others and therefore be fully human, and so help us all to a better future. Olé! Please take courage and take care!

Sarah Barratt:

Our thoughts are with all of you in Gaza at this terrible time. It must feel as if the world has turned its back but there are many of us who support you and who want to support peace and justice, who are aware of your bravery and stoicism under such vicious attacks. We send our love.

John Morgan, UK:

Dear Friends, I live in Sheffield England I am following the unnecessary escalation of force from Israel. I am outraged and saddened that every ( about 2 years) Israeli attack’s you and your people. I belong to the national organisation, Palestine Solidarity Campaign, we are making our voice heard and will shout out loud  against these War Crimes. Stay safe love to you and your fellow Palestinians.

Susan Wooldridge, UK:

To the Theatre for Everybody in Gaza: To you, your families and all the Palestinian people I send my warmest good wishes and hope for your struggle. We are thinking of you and are with you always. Love from Susi in London xxx 

Helen Watts and Angus MacPherson, Bristol, UK:

Sending our solidarity and love to you all. We are doing our best to raise awareness, share accurate reports about the current situation, the loss of life, fear and uncertainty experienced in Gaza. This a time for truth, not obfuscation and ill-informed media reporting. This is a time to acknowledge our common humanity and do something about it. Your pain is our pain.

Carolyn Leary, Sheffield, UK:

Hi! I am writing from Sheffield. We sing songs of solidarity for the people of Palestine. Tonight we are meeting up to be together and share our distress at what you are going through. xx

Sue Mayer, Peak District, UK:

My name is Sue and I live in the Peak District in the UK. The people of Gaza and Palestinians everywhere are in our hearts and minds.  We know that the worse thing is the feeling that you are isolated and the people of the world are ignoring what you are going through.  We want you to know that we hold you dear and believe in your human right to peace, freedom and justice.  We are sending our love, solidarity and support.

Elaine Hoctor, London:

My name is Elaine Hoctor and I live in London. You are in the hearts and minds of so many of us here. I am so upset and angry about the brutal bombardment of the people of Gaza and attacks  on Palestinians in Jerusalem and elsewhere. You have a human right to peace, justice and freedom and you have our love, support and solidarity.

Helen West, Sheffield, UK:

I felt shocked, angry, heartbroken when I heard the news this week of yet more Israeli atrocities against the Palestinian people.  I urge our governments, especially the US and UK, to take urgent action to stop this and long-term action to ensure a safe and peaceful return to your homelands.  

I sing with a solidarity choir in the UK called Tadhamon.  We were very sad that we couldn’t visit you, to sing with you in 2020, due to Covid.  However we continue to sing with you via zoom and video. I sing with another choir, the Sheffield Socialist Choir, and we have dedicated our rehearsal tonight to all of you in Palestine who inspire us with your love and determination. Sumud.  Take care good friends. 

Janet Henfrey, London:

Dear Palestinian friends in Gaza,Jerusalem and everywhere. You are not alone.Here in London your struggle for justice and the right to live in peace and freedom is our struggle for and with you. My name is Janet,an actress,a friend and neighbour of Jonathan’s,of Hossam and Jamal and you all. You are constantly in our thoughts and heart, more than ever now in this nightmare time for you and I pray the world will wake up and at last take action to right your wrongs.May you keep the flame of Hope alive in your hearts as you live in mine.

Lily Susan Todd, London:

People of Gaza, I  am one of many many thousands across the world  who see your suffering, and  feel the weight of the injustices done to you.  I send you heartfelt support and sympathy; know that though we are far away from you, you are not alone, and many hearts are with you.

Sybil Ashton:

People of Gaza, we know what is happening and send our support and solidarity.  

Jan Marr, Sheffield, UK:

I want you to know that I see what is happening and I stand with you.  You are and will remain in my thoughts.  I wish you strength and justice for Palestine. With love.

Digby Swift,  Doncaster, UK:

I echo the message from Jonathan Chadwick.  We are thinking of you particularly in the current terrible situation, but also on an ongoing basis under the wicked, long-term Israeli ‘siege’.  I visited Gaza around the year 2000 in relation to official British support to education in Gaza, and have visited East Jerusalem and the West Bank many times, the last being during Ramadan in 2019.  I am appalled by the way Palestinians are and have been treated so badly for so long.  Whilst I’m pleased there is some British support through NGOs and official support through UNRWA, I am ashamed that so little being done politically by our Government to try to resolve the situation.  We can only hope that more people outside are now becoming more aware of what you are suffering, and that this will lead to pressure to uphold UN resolutions and rectify this gross injustice.

Celia Mather, Sheffield, UK:

Dear Friends in Gaza, Please know that our thoughts are with you during this terrible resurgence of violence against you by the Israeli authorities, and we are taking action as best we can to lobby our UK Government and global bodies to stop supporting Israel and respect your human rights. Please stay safe and strong.

Jayne Meadows:

Dear friends, I hold you in the light and pray for you to be liberated and free to live peacefully on your land.

Katharine Eastman, London:

We live in Kentish Town and work as artists. We cannot begin to imagine what you experience every day and pray that you find a way through this. Katharine and Eddie.

Peter Downey, Bath, UK:

Our prayers and hopes are with you. One day I will come, have been trying for years. Good luck.

Georgio Baldari:

Don’t, please, be overcome by fear. The occupation of Palestine isn’t for ever, and, the Zionist Power will end in a civil war, that is their destiny.

Tim Towers, UK:

There are many thousands of us here in the U.K. who stand with you in your resistance to the apartheid state. We support you in your struggle against colonial oppression and we will stand by you now as you endure the horrors inflicted on you by Israel’s violent assault on you and your rightful homeland.

Montgomeryshire Palestine Solidarity Campaign, Wales:

Sending greetings and solidarity to our friends in Gaza. We will be having a street vigil on Saturday. Our thoughts are with you. Justice, freedom & peace for Palestine. Kathy, Chair Montgomeryshire PSC

Deborah Davies, Manchester, UK:

To the beautiful people of Palestine

You don’t know me and I don’t know you but I’ve had you in my heart all my life. 

I’m from Manchester in England

My mother is from Dublin in Ireland

She told me about the bad things that happened during the troubles in Ireland so perhaps that is where my sense of justice and anti occupation originates 

I wear the Palestinian badge on every item of clothing I wear every day

I go to any protests I can

I talk to anyone who will listen

I constantly bombard my MP with calls for justice for you

My heart breaks every time I hear of a single one of you being injured or killed. 

I deplore the sadistic and gratuitous violence reigned down upon you for decades. 

The occupation and rape of your land, your water, your resources 

The relentless hatred towards you and your people

I cannot watch the UK or world  news coverage of your struggles because I know that it is always Zionist biased.

What can I do from simple home here in Manchester? 

Only tell you that I love you

I pray for peace and justice for you

I cry with you

And I take solace from your courage 

Your strength

Your undying dignity

And most of all, 

From the faces of your beautiful children. 

Free Palestine

Martin Kemp, UK:

Thanks for this initiative. I’m between work sessions, have no time to compose anything, feel very inarticulate with rage and impotence in the present moment, but would want our friends and colleagues in Palestine to know how much we’re thinking of them… 

Angela Martin, Sheffield, UK:

I think I’ve missed your time deadline, but have only just received the email. I’m sending the message anyway. I’m a member of Sheffield PSC, national PSC, Sheffield Labour Friends of Palestine, Northern Women for Palestine and a choir, Tadhamon, put together for solidarity with Palestine. I’m also a signatory to the Artists for Palestine Pledge.I will also be writing to the contacts I have in Palestine. And I certainly send this message to you at the theatre as well.

Garth and Gill Hewitt (Founders of the Amos Trust):

Dear Jamal and Hossam, your families and friends. We hold you in our hearts and prayers and with love and solidarity.  Gaza and Palestine are beautiful places – we have visited Gaza in the past – that have suffered enough   of occupation and all that means.

It is your human right to justice with peace. 

George Snow:

We are aware of the suffering caused by the pitiless bombing of Gaza by the inhuman Zionists. We stand beside and support you. Stay safe. Resist.

John Garrett, Coventry, UK:

What you are suffering is outrageous and unjust. I and other friends of mine do what we can to make the plight of Palestinains known as broadly as possible. You are never absent from my thoughts, and my consideration about what I can do to end the pain and loss to which you are being subjected as a result of my government’s inhuman decisions made in 1917 and carried through, basically, ever since. Please, stay strong. Justice will eventually come to pass.

Kathy McCubbing:

What is happening now in Palestine and what has been happening for the past 70+ years is disgraceful and Israel must be brought to account for the atrocities it commits.  While our and other governments are complicit in Israel’s abuses for greed and geopolitical reasons, more and more people around the world know the causes of the suffering of the Palestinian people, and we stand with you in solidarity and love, and we keep pressing at the doors of the powerful, and one day they will be broken down by the efforts of good people. Sincerely,

Olsi Jazexhi, Canada:

Put my name

Heather Stroud:

Dear Brothers and Sisters, This is just a short message to send my love and blessings to you. Gaza and now Jerusalem, are on the frontline of this massive assault against our human family. We are all connected and your suffering, while we distant from us, reaches your brothers and sisters all around the globe. It is our governments who sanction these attacks against you by their complicit silence. Our job is to challenge them while also letting you know that although we can’t be with you, you are in our thoughts. Our love reaches out to you over the miles and expanse of water. With love, your sister Heather.

Don Saunders North Wales:

I support the message being sent to our Palestinian friends and hope you can convey my support and heartfelt wishes for their safety.. Thank you.

Peter and Carole Crabb, Cardiff, Wales, UK:

Dear Hossam and Jamal and all your loved ones, friends and colleagues,The world is now watching as the occupying power of Israel indiscriminately bombs your homeland. The world can now see the reality of the lives that you and other Palestinians have endured for so many years.. We are with all of you in your struggle to live lives that are full and healthy. We will NEVER stop thinking of you. Justice for all Palestinians. We send our love, solidarity and support.

Alhad Sykes:

We are with you the people of Palestine, may God keep you safe, give you strength and courage to endure. Your patience and courage is truly remarkable and may it be a way for your entry into jannah ya raab. God bless.

Liz Maxwell, Sheffield, UK:

Love Solidarity and support to you all. I hope you manage to stay safe during this terrible ordeal. Best Wishes.

Christina MacDonald:

This war must be terrifying, you are in our thoughts and we wish you safety and an end to the war and to the siege. Samud, from Christina on what should be a happy Eid Al Fitr.

Nicolá Fray, Spain:

Dear Hossam & Jamal, My family would like to express our deep sorrow for the terrible suffering in Gaza. We send hugs & love & hope for you all..

Rela Mazali, Writer, Independent scholar, Activist, Herzlia, Israel:

Dear Jamal, dear Hossam, The siege, the bombings and the many other forms of attack and oppression that are perpetrated upon Gaza by the state I of which I’m a citizen, Israel, are criminal and outrageous. For decades now, I have been active with different groups in protesting them in multiple ways. I feel the deepest respect for Gazans who continue to withstand these horrific actions. Know that here we continue to decry these crimes. I’m profoundly thankful for your willingness to accept this message of stubborn hope and solidarity.

Stan Squires, Canada:

I am from Vancouver,Canada and i wanted to say that Yesterday i went to a rally here in Vancouver for  the People of Gaza and the West Bank.Here in Vancouver we are with You all the Way.There will be another Rally here in Vancouver on Saturday.I am sure there will be hundreds of People here at the Rally like it was at the last one. This support will continue until Israeli Occupation is defeated.The whole world is Behind Gaza and the West Bank.Israeli Apartheid has got to go, then there will be Peace. From the River to the Sea, Palestine will be Free.

Maureen Muse, USA:

My name is Maureen and I live in Brooklyn, New York. I am sending a message of love and solidarity to the people of Gaza and Palestinians. You are my brothers and sisters. We share this earth. You are in my heart. You are not forgotten. I believe in your right to peace, freedom and justice. I stand with you today and forever. 

Brigid Waddams:

To you all dear friends in Gaza.  We are thinking of you and praying that your suffering will be over and that peace and justice will come to Palestine one day soon. Inshallah!  With all very best wishes.

Tony Haynes, London:

Can you please add me and all my comrades in the Grand Union Orchestra to your messages of sympathy, support and abhorrence. Needless to say, I’m appalled and disgusted by the horror visited on these – and indeed all – poor people. Love.

Mercedes and Nicolás Weber, Spain :

Dear Jamal and Hossam, your families and friends. We missed the appointment of the collective letter to Gaza but we want to let you know that we are thinking very hard about you and we are obviously very concerned about what is happening there at the moment. Take good care of yourselves, Greetings from Barcelona, Spain. Mercedes and Nicolás



Note: 

We have received video messages from Raghad Chaar, Nadia Nadif, Agatha Ezzedine, Danielle Allen, Riwa Saab, Mia O.  They will be sent on.

Aisha Dennis and Sarah Jacob wrote their messages in Arabic and we have translated them but will send on the originals.

Here we go! Gaza under Covid

Hossam Madhoun’s message from Gaza December 2020

With Jamal Al Rozzi, Hossam is co-director of Theatre for Everybody in Gaza

Let’s look back at how Gaza was before Covid. As if life didn’t suck enough (forgive my language!), but let’s think it over!

Here we go:

2 million human beings trapped in a very tiny piece of land, called Gaza, treated as a hostile entity by all surrounding it; by the Israelis who find it very fortunate that Gaza is ruled by Hamas so they can bomb it whenever they want without being questioned; by the Egyptians who blame it for all their troubles in Sinai; by a sea polluted with shit and sewage!

With half of its population without jobs or any source of income, with a very poor health system, with water scarcity, with power outages most of the time, with hundreds of children begging in the streets, with suicides or attempts at suicide by hundreds of youth, and even children, every year, with a patriarchal society that believes that women are created to be servants for men in the kitchen and in bed, with a radical group controlling Gaza that believes that God chose them to have the sole truth and the ultimate righteousness to torture anyone who questions their rule, with a world that turns its back on our misery. 

Covid 19 arrives. Welcome! Who cares? Another crisis hits Gaza. So what? We’re used to it! Really? How can you get used to crisis? Not because we went through devastating wars on us in 2008, in 2012, in 2014, not to mention some small wars from time to time, just for the Israelis to make sure that we don’t run out of fun.  

Well.

We’re used to having curfews in Gaza, imposed by the Israeli army during first Intifada in 1987 – 1994, during all the wars: 2008 – 2012 – 2014. But today Covid 19 needs its share, so since 24th August we are in night-time curfew, and two weeks ago we (I mean the local authorities) added a curfew on Fridays and Saturdays, hoping to decrease the numbers of infections, yet the numbers do not decease. 

And while infected people are increasing, jobs are decreasing, with cafés, restaurants, cafeterias and many other small workshops shut down, so thousands of people have lost their income. 

But the local authorities are clever, they decrease the number of infected people by decreasing the numbers of daily tests! Isn’t it clever??!! But, they cannot decrease the number of daily deaths. 

But you know, not everything is dark, the Friday to Saturday curfew increases socialisation with my neighbours. We meet in the basement of our building every night, we chat, drink coffee, some smoke Shisha (water pipe). It is fun but it does not last long as sadly one of our old neighbours who suffers from Alzheimer’s started to join us and kept telling his lonely story 50 times in 50 minutes. 

Life is beautiful

With love from Gaza  


THE EMIGRANT in GAZA – Appeal for Support

Support our new production project in Gaza.  Please send it on to your contacts.  

THE EMIGRANTS

an adaptation of Stanislaw Mrozek’s play by Theatre for Everybody specially for young (18-30 year olds) audiences.

We are launching the development of a creative project in Gaza: Theatre For Everybody’s adaptation of THE EMIGRANTS by Stanislaw Mrozek.  The Arabic translation is by Hossam Madhoun and the adaptation for Gaza of this modern classic will be directed by Naeem Nasr.

I am writing to you because you are a long-term supporter of Az Theatre’s collaboration with Theatre for Everybody in Gaza and/or you have pledged your support for the Gaza Cultural Centre Coalition’s work to build a new cultural centre for Gaza. Both these projects were on hold during the onset of the Covid-19/SARS 2 pandemic.  Only a few days ago the first community transmitted cases of Covid-19 have been discovered in Gaza.  Although this is extremely worrying we are determined to proceed with our work.  We are seeking your support.

DONATE


Please click here to read the joint appeal by civil society organisations about the situation in Gaza

About THE EMIGRANTS

This play by the acclaimed Polish emigré writer is about the illusions and smashed dreams of two emigrants to the ‘rich’ world.  Its style is absurdist and slapstick, tragic and comic by turn. For Gaza’s young audiences Theatre for Everybody’s adaptation will be an urgent piece of work. THE EMIGRANTS will address the centrifugal forces at work in Gaza. 35,000 Palestinians left the Gaza Strip between 2014 and 2018 and didn’t return.  Young people have been known to set off in boats never to be seen again.  If you are in a prison you must think of escaping but the Gaza prison is of a very particular sort and what awaits the emigrants may not live up to their dreams.

We are planning to extend the reach of this work to publics in the UK and in other international venues through events at which young people in Gaza can engage in conversation with groups around the world.  If you are interested in running such an event please contact us at the email address below.

We need your support

We can creatively engage with 1000 young people in Gaza, the direct beneficiaries and it will cost £18,000. Some of this money can be raised through arts funds but we rely on individual donations

We are setting up a project development fund with the aim of raising £6000 through individual donations.  So we are making this appeal to you:  

If you like this idea and want to see it happen, show your support by giving us a donation.  It doesn’t matter how much or how little.  We would rather see 10 contributions of £10 than 1 of £100.  It is people’s support that counts. If you contributed £18 you would be ensuring the participation of a young person in Gaza. If you can give more, great!

DONATE

Read more about the context, the play, the concept, the company, the writer and the creative team. 

Our project

Az Theatre and Theatre for Everybody have worked together on creative projects in Gaza since 2009 and were partners in the War Stories project from 2002.  After numerous projects focusing on young people in Gaza we produced Gaza: War & Peace, the first Arabic stage adaptation of Tolstoy’s novel, playing to hundreds and hundreds of young people in Gaza in the Al Mishal Cultural Centre that was destroyed by Israeli bombardment in August 2018. We gained the participation of many hundreds of people throughout the world in a dynamic outreach programme that employed online video public events, climaxing in HERE THERE EVERYWHERE at the P21 Gallery in London on November 2017.

THE EMIGRANTS will be an advocacy project for the rebuilding of the Cultural Centre in Gaza. The Al Mishal Cultural Centre was destroyed by an Israeli air strike in August 2018. Alongside all our statements and publicity on this project we will promote the idea and vision of a new cultural centre for Gaza. The initial contributions for the rebuilding of the Cultural Centre are still in the bank except for money spent on research amongst the arts community in Gaza.  We also have a few people who make monthly contributions for which we are so grateful!  Read more about the Gaza Cultural Centre Coalition

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