Graduate and Playwright Taha Expresses the Tragedy of Children and War

Playwright Dalia Taha is not the first to see that children are the ultimate victims of military conflict. But in her 90-minute play “Fireworks,” she gives a vivid account of the psychic damage done to children growing up in a city like Gaza and of the elaborate pretences adopted by parents to protect their children from reality. The play is about family life in Gaza and paints a frightening picture of lost innocence.

Taha has lived in Ramallah since the age of four, and her play examines the claustrophobia of life under siege. Her dramas deal with violence and the impossibility of life under occupation, but Taha insists there is more to her productions than Palestinian politics.

Taha had always wanted to be a writer, but chose to study architecture at Birzeit University, in a town north of Ramallah, where her mother works as a librarian. Why architecture?

“It was a space,” she says, “where you could experience art and science at the same time. At that age I was into both.” But she only briefly worked in an architects’ office, finding it restrictive, and chose after a few months to concentrate on writing – fiction, poetry, and now plays.