Kuwaiti ‘Silence’ wins big at Carthage Theatrical Days

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Kuwaiti director Suleiman Al-Bassam raising the “Golden Tanit” award.

KUWAIT CITY, Dec 12: The Kuwaiti production “Silence” clinched the prestigious Golden Tanit Award at the twenty-fourth edition of Carthage Theatrical Days. The event, held under the theme “With theater we live… With art we resist,” concluded last night at the Opera Theater in the City of Culture in Tunis.

In addition to the top honor, “Silence” earned accolades for Best Script, awarded to director and writer Suleiman Al-Bassam, and Best Actress, presented to the lead, Hala Omran.

The narrative of “Silence” revolves around the Beirut Port explosion on August 4, 2020, exploring its economic and social impacts on Lebanon. The production delves into themes of identity, existence, and human conflict, conveying these through a distinctive artistic language reliant on motor performance and physical expression instead of conventional dialogue.

Other notable recognitions included the Silver Tanit Award presented to the Moroccan production “Shams,” directed and written by Amine Boudriga. The Bronze Tanit Award went to Tunisia’s “Ferma,” which not only secured the award for Best Scenography but also earned Ghazi Al Zoghbani recognition as the Best Actor.

Expressing his happiness upon receiving the Golden Tanit Award for the best theatrical performance, Kuwaiti director Suleiman Al-Bassam commended the esteemed status of “Carthage Theatrical Days” and the discerning Tunisian audience. He also praised the collaborative efforts of his team, the show’s star, and the artistic contributions of Hala Omran.

Festival director Moez Al-Murabit declared the session a success, attributing it to the dedication of all participants and workers. Emphasizing the session’s thematic focus on theater as an expression of resistance and respect for human rights, Al-Murabit reiterated the adopted slogan, “With theater we live, with theater we resist.” He underscored the determination to steer the event towards resisting aggression, opposing land usurpation, and rejecting ethnic cleansing in Palestine.

The session featured over 60 theatrical works from 28 countries across different continents, categorized into sections such as the official competition (11 performances), parallel performances (24 performances), World Theater (18 performances), and theatrical expressions in the diaspora (4 performances).

Following his recognition at the closing ceremony, artist Dawoud Hussein expressed happiness for standing on the festival stage founded by his cherished teacher, Professor Moncef Souissi. However, he acknowledged the bittersweet nature of his joy, with concerns for the situation in Gaza and Palestine weighing on his mind.

Looking ahead, the play “Silence” is set to represent Kuwait at the Arab Theater Festival, organized by the Arab Theater Authority, in Baghdad from January 10 to 18.

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