B.O.O.M. Fest: "I Heart Hamas and Other Things I'm Afraid to Tell You"
Critically acclaimed play I Heart Hamas: And Other Things I'm Afraid to Tell You will mark its San Francisco return on Friday, January 7th and Sunday, January 9th. The introspective one-woman show on life as a Palestinian-American returns to the Off-Market Theater, where it premiered, as part of the B.O.O.M Festival (Best of Off-Market).
With the current ongoing conflicts in the Middle East, the threat of global terrorism, and the never-ending negotiations and hostilities between Israelis and Palestinians, it's hard not to feel overwhelmed by all of the bad international news. That's exactly how Jennifer Jajeh feels. And to make matters worse, Jennifer is Palestinian. Well, Palestinian American. Or more precisely: a single, Catholic, first generation, Palestinian American woman who chooses to return to her parents' hometown of Ramallah at the start of the Second Intifada.
In her tragicomic solo theatre show, I Heart Hamas: And Other Things I'm Afraid to Tell You, Jennifer Jajeh is just trying to get back home, but it's a lot more complicated than that. The guy sitting next to her in the taxi is smoking cigarettes, but won't roll the window down because he doesn't want to let the tear gas in. The 70 year old grandmother on her other side wants to know why her Arabic is so bad, why she doesn't wax her arms, and why at the age of 28 she is not yet married. It's 100 degrees outside, and she's been in this taxi for 2 hours. Yet all she can focus on are the soldiers on the one side of the road shooting rubber bullets -- through traffic -- at the kids hurling stones and curses. Wait, why did she want to come to Palestine?
Sick and tired of the unsolicited discussions, debates and disagreements about her identity and her opinions about the Palestinian-Israeli conflict, Jennifer tries to figure it out for herself. Join her on American and Palestinian soil on auditions, bad dates, and across military checkpoints as she navigates the thorny terrain around Palestinian identity. Weaving together humor, pop culture references and live theatre, Jajeh explores how she becomes Palestinian-ized, then politicized and eventually radicalized in a fresh, often funny, searingly honest way.
I Heart Hamas: And Other Things I'm Afraid To Tell You, recognized by NYTheatre.com as "a fascinating look into a world we don't often see or hear about," made its world premiere in 2008 as a part of New York's International Fringe Festival. Following strong media praise and audience reception, the play makes its San Francisco debut.
Jennifer Jajeh is a San Francisco based actor, writer and independent filmmaker. She has appeared in over three-dozen film, television, commercial and theater productions over the past four years, and can be heard on the web as a part of the ongoing improv podcast Radiostar. In addition to her work as an actor, she has produced and directed several short video projects. Her video work has appeared at the MOMA (New York), on PBS, in collections distributed by National Video Resources and Charles Street Video, as well as at national and international film festivals, museums, art galleries, and universities.
I Heart Hamas welcomes director W. Kamau Bell (Comedy Central, Live 105, Roof Top Comedy) to its San Francisco premier. Noted by SF Weekly as "smart, stylist, and very much in the mold of politically outspoken comedians like Dave Chappelle and Margaret Cho," Bell was honored as their pick for 2008 Bay Area Comedian of the Year. As a solo theatre director, Bell has helmed "don't make me look too psychotic", "F**king Handicapped Guy", "Miss-Matches.com", and "Love, Humiliation, Karaoke". He founded and directs SF's Solo Performance Workshop, an incubator for new solo talent.
965 Mission St
San Francisco, CA 94103
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