International Play Reading Festival: This is not a memorized script, this is a well-rehearsed story
International Play Reading Festival: This is not a memorized script, this is a well-rehearsed story
Queerness is a construct. So is language, and so is this play. Nothing about this performance is reliable. The performer questions gender, memory, sex, identity, and her relationship with Beirut — but gives no answers.
School of the Arts online
October 20, 2021 | 6:30 pm
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Performance details

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How to listen

To join the listening party on 10/20 at 6:30pm, register in advance.

Presented by

School of the Arts
Columbia University
New York, NY

About This Event

Wednesday, October 20, 6:30 pm ET
Podcast Release and Listening Party

To hear This is not a memorized script, this is a well-rehearsed story, subscribe to the International Play Reading Festival wherever you get your podcasts.

Written by Dima Mikhayel Matta (Lebanon)
Directed by Noelle Ghoussaini
Sound Design by Ada Westfall

Dima Mikhayel Matta (she/they) is a Beirut-based writer and actress. Matta, a Fulbright scholar, holds an MFA in creative writing from Rutgers University. They have been acting for the stage since 2006. In 2014, they founded Cliffhangers, the first bilingual storytelling platform in Lebanon, and host monthly storytelling events along with parallel events such as storytelling workshops and performances. They also co-produce festivals and workshops that center on Arab theatre, highlighting women and LGBTQIA voices. These include “Arab Voices: Stories of Palestine,” and “Women Theatremakers: Playwriting Workshop.” Their first play, This is not a memorized script, this is a well-rehearsed story, an autobiographical play on queerness and their relationship with the city toured in London, New York, and Belfast, and premiered in Beirut in February 2020. They are currently working on their second play, An Uncurated World, about queer intimate partner violence. Most recently, Matta has been working with podcast composer Ada Westfall and Theater Mitu in Brooklyn, NY, performing in Utopian Hotline from Sept 3–26, 2021.

Noelle Ghoussaini is a theatre-maker, ritual artist and cultural organizer. She creates expansive and genre-defying theatre and ritual experiences to: re-imagine liberation, nurture transformation and connect with spirit and the natural world. Her work can be experienced in public spaces, theatres, schools, parks and detention centers and throughout the US, Europe and the Middle East. Noelle is dedicated to equity, connection and creativity for all beings. Recent Projects include: shapelight (founding artistic director), The Jungle (Resident Director, Curran Theatre), A Skate Play (Director / Adaptor, Co-production of The Jenin Freedom Theatre and Skateqilya), Acquittal (Director, Pan Asian Rep), Dreamscapes (Co-creator / Performer, LaGuardia Performing Arts Center), 6 views: on women of power and interest (Creator / Performer, Venice Biennale), Mariposa and the Saint by Julia Steele Allen (Dir. National Tour) There is a Field by Jen Marlowe (Dir. National Tour). Noelle was also the recipient of the Laundromat Project Create Change Fellowship, was a New York Theatre Workshop 2050 directing fellow, a Target Margin Institute Fellow, a Hemispheric Institute fellow for artist activists and a member of the 2013 Lincoln Center Director’s Lab. She is currently a member of the board of the Friends of the Jenin Freedom Theatre. MA Arts Politics (NYU, Tisch). /

Image: Dima Mikhayel Matta & Noelle Ghoussaini / photos courtesy of Columbia School of the Arts