Fireworks, a new play by Palestinian writer, Dalia Taha, to be staged at Royal Court Theatre

Published on Tue 12 Aug 2014
*A new play by Palestinian writer Dalia Taha, Fireworks (Al'ab Nariya), will be staged in the Jerwood Theatre Upstairs at the Royal Court from Thursday 12 February to Saturday 14 March 2015 (press night Thursday 19 February).*

Tuesday 12 August

A new play by Palestinian writer Dalia Taha, Fireworks (Al’ab Nariya), will be staged in the Jerwood Theatre Upstairs at the Royal Court from Thursday 12 February to Saturday 14 March 2015 (press night Thursday 19 February).

“There’s no-one in the streets but us. You run that way and I’ll run this way. Whoever gets back to the front door first and without getting shot, wins.”

In a Palestinian town eleven year-old Lubna and twelve year-old Khalil are playing on the empty stairwell in their apartment block. As the siege intensifies outside, fear for their safety becomes as crippling as the conflict itself.

Dalia Taha’s play gives us a new way of seeing how war fractures childhood.

Fireworks was first developed during the Royal Court’s International Residency in August 2013. Dalia returned to London this summer and, in response to recent events, continued to develop her play.

Directed by the Royal Court’s International Associate, Richard Twyman, Fireworks (Al’ab Nariya), is part of International Playwrights: A Genesis Foundation Project, and will be accompanied by a series of Big Idea events, talks and readings during the run, to be announced.

Vicky Featherstone, Artistic Director of the Royal Court Theatre said:

“It is testament to the Royal Court’s extraordinary International programme that we are able to programme Dalia’s play at this moment – a personal and considered response to what is happening in Palestine. Dalia spent last week with us here in London where she worked intensively on the play. The play is about the children of the struggle and offers insight and a glimmer of hope where on a day to day basis there seems to be none. If the Royal Court is for anything, it is for this. To encourage writers to tell the hardest stories, to try to understand the world in which we live and in some small way contribute to the imagining of new possibilities. We are very grateful for Dalia’s courage.”

Dalia Taha is a Palestinian poet and playwright. She was born in Berlin in 1986 and grew up in Ramallah, Palestine. Her first play Keffiyeh/Made in China was produced by the Flemish Royal Theatre and A.M. Qattan Foundation, and premiered in Brussels before touring seven Palestinian cities across the West Bank. The play was given a staged reading in July 2013 at the Mosaic Rooms in London, as part of the Shubbak Festival, in association with the Royal Court. Dalia is currently pursuing an MFA in Playwriting at Brown University and has published two collections of poetry and one novel.

Richard Twyman directs. International Associate at the Royal Court, he recently directed The Djinns of Eidgah by Abhishek Majumdar, Phil in Space by Tom Wells as part of Unusual Unions (also at Wilderness Festival) and A New Song as part of New Plays from South Africa at the Royal Court. Richard directed The Djinns of Eidgah for Rage Theatre in Mumbai as part of the Writers Bloc Festival. His other credits include Henry IV Pt II for the multi-Olivier Award winning RSC Histories Cycle (Olivier Awards for Best Ensemble, Best Revival and Evening Standard Editor’s Choice Award), Ditch at the Old Vic Tunnels/HighTide, Sixty-Six Books at the Bush Theatre and Give Me Your Hand (nominated for a Drama Desk Award), at the Irish Rep, New York.

Fireworks (Al’ab Nariya), is presented as part of International Playwrights: A Genesis Foundation Project, with additional support from the British Council and the A.M. Qattan Foundation.


For more information, please contact Anna Evans on 020 7565 5063 [email protected]

Notes to Editors:
International Playwriting at the Royal Court Theatre
Since 1996 the Royal Court Theatre has travelled the world, running long-term play development projects and building relationships between playwrights, directors, actors and translators. Working with playwrights and theatre artists in 70 countries and in 40 languages, the work is supported by the Genesis Foundation and the British Council.

The Royal Court Theatre has worked in Palestine since 1998, working with dozens of playwrights both running playwriting programmes and workshops in numerous cities across the country, as well as bringing artists to London. Many Royal Court writers and directors have taken part in these projects since its start, alongside International Director, Elyse Dodgson including Mike Bartlett, April De Angelis, David Greig, Stephen Jeffreys, Phyllida Lloyd, Anthony Neilson, Rufus Norris, Penelope Skinner, Richard Twyman and Sacha Wares.

Fireworks (Al’ab Nariya) by Dalia Taha
directed by Richard Twyman
Thursday 12 February – Saturday 14 March 2015
Jerwood Theatre Upstairs, Royal Court Theatre, Sloane Square SW1W 8AS
Monday – Saturday 7.45pm
Saturday matinees (from 21 Feb) 3pm
Thursday matinee (from 26 Feb) 3pm
Press Night Thursday 19 February, 7pm
Age Guidance 14+
Tickets £20 Mondays all seats £10
Concessions £15* (available in advance until 21 February, and all matinees. For all other performances, available on a standby basis on the day)
School and HE Groups of 8+ £10 (available Wed -Sat mat, plus midweek mat)
Access £12 (plus a companion at the same rate) *ID required. All discounts subject to avail. / 020 7565 5000

Fireworks (Al’ab Nariya) is presented as part of International Playwrights: A Genesis Foundation Project.

The Genesis Foundation supports the Royal Court’s International Playwrights Programme. It funds the International department’s workshops in diverse countries as well as residencies at the Royal Court that find and develop the next generation of professional playwrights. The Foundation’s involvement extends to productions and rehearsed readings which helps the Royal Court to provide a springboard for young writers to greater public and critical attention. For more information, please visit

Fireworks (Al’ab Nariya) is supported by British Council. For more information on the British Council and its work, please visit

Fireworks (Al’ab Nariya) is supported by the A.M. Qattan Foundation. It is a UK charity dedicated to the support of culture and education in Palestine and the Arab world.

Coutts support Innovation at the Royal Court Theatre

Coutts is the UK private banking arm of the Royal Bank of Scotland. Coutts has a long history of supporting the arts going back 200 years, having looked after the financial affairs of many famous clients connected with the arts such as Bram Stoker, Charles Dickens and Chopin. In 1816, Thomas Coutts married Harriot Mellon, a popular actress of her day, and together they became partners of a number of London Theatres, including the Drury Lane and the Royal Opera House. Coutts has even featured in a number of artistic works including The Gondoliers by Gilbert and Sullivan, and Robert Louis Stevenson’s classic story Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde. In the new millennium, this tradition has continued not only through managing the finances of many of today’s top writers, actors and musicians, but also through our arts sponsorship programme and we are delighted to support The Royal Court and its diverse range of ground-breaking performances.