I am extremely happy to announce that my friend Wajahat Ali will be honored later this month as a rising muslim artist by the Muslim Public Affairs Council for his landmark play, The Domestic Crusaders. Here’s the press release by MPAC:
Muslim Public Affairs Council announced today that it will recognize
playwright Wajahat Ali as a rising American Muslim artist at the 18th
annual Media Awards Gala on Saturday, April 25 in Los Angeles.
Wajahat Ali is a playwright, journalist, blogger, short story writer and Attorney at Law. His play, “The Domestic Crusaders,”
is the first major play about the American Muslim experience. It
originally premiered at the Thrust Stage of the Tony award winning
Berkeley Repertory Theater to universal acclaim in 2005, and is slated
to make its New York premiere on the 8th anniversary of 9/11.
Domestic Crusaders” focuses on a day in the life of a modern Muslim
Pakistani-American family of six eclectic, unique members, who convene
at the family house to celebrate the twenty-first birthday of the
youngest child. With a background of 9/11 and the scapegoating of
Muslim Americans, the tensions and sparks fly among the three
generations, culminating in an intense family battle as each “crusader”
struggles to assert and impose their respective voices and opinions,
while still attempting to maintain and understand that unifying thread
that makes them part of the same family.
Among its rave reviews,
Academy Award winning actress and screenwriter Emma Thompson called
Ali’s play “exactly the sort of theater we need today. The gulf that
separates cultures must be bridged and Art is one of our best hopes.
I’ll be supporting this all the way.”
Ali was honored as an “Influential Muslim American Artist” by the State
Department. He was also recently honored as a “Muslim Leader of
Tomorrow” for his journalism work and invited to participate in the
“Muslim Leaders of Tomorrow” conference in Doha, Qatar. Ali is also a
frequent contributor to the Washington Post, The Guardian, Huffington Post, Counterpunch and Chowk.
Wajahat is amazing – he’s incredibly prolific as a writer and journalist, and is also an energetic and tireless activist. It’s been a real pleasure to get to know him over the past year online and I look forward to meeting him in person. Follow him on twitter, read his blog, and above all go see his play when it comes out in September!
Incidentally, ladies, he’s still single. I’m just saying…