University Theatre Group Wins Five Arab Festival Awards

Birzeit University’s theatre group, Mawasem Masrahyeh, won five awards for their performance of “The House of Bernarda Alba” at the 12th Philadelphia Arab Universities Theater Festival held at Philadelphia University in Amman, Jordan.Produced by the Deanship of Student Affairs and directed by Fathi Abdel Rahman, the play was inspired by the work of the Spanish writer and poet Federico Garcia Lorca, which discussed the plight of women in society.The Mawasim team was awarded Best Direction, Best Actor in a Supporting Role, Best Makeup, Best Customs[CS1] , and Best Decor.“The House of Bernarda Alba,” according to team manager and activities coordinator Mohammad Hajj Ahmad, discusses gender discrimination. “The play analyzes the possible power relationship that exists in our communities, considering the concepts of social traditions and religion and the consequences of repression.”Dean of Student Affairs Mohammad Al-Ahmad spoke of the importance of such recognition and acknowledgement in encouraging ongoing sustainable efforts in theatrical production. “These awards are so important to us. They reward our enthusiasm and our drive to make changes with the resources we have.”“We’ve been focusing a lot more on developing new works that will have a long recognition beyond Palestine,” he continued. “We’ve made efforts in developing artists from our own backyard.”  Birzeit University was among many other universities from Algeria, Saudi Arabia, Tunisia and Palestine, which was also represented by Al-Najah University.