This Thursday, Touchstone Theatre presents the World Premiere of The Wrong Bashir by Ismaili playwright Zahida Rahemtulla at the Firehall Arts Centre stage.
Touchstone Associate Artistic Director Daniela Atiencia (2022 Jessie Award co-Winner in Outstanding Direction) directs this comedy which follows Bashir Ladha (Aman Mann) —a wayward philosophy major leaning towards nihilism – who has been selected to assume a prestigious religious position. When Bashir’s parents (Seth Ranaweera, Neha Devi Singh) accept on his behalf and two council representatives arrive to meet their esteemed nominee, what follows is a hilarious mistaken-identity romp that forces the family to question the future of their traditions and way of life.
“Bashir is a character that has a great deal of existential angst, and a philosophy that is different from his predecessors. I wanted to look at the different ways of perceiving life in the different generations, and also look at how the changing community intersected with that,” said playwright Zahida Rahemtulla. “When communities migrate it’s often not just language or culture that’s lost, but also a certain way of being, which can happen when any community that’s more communal changes. I was really interested in that question because I grew up seeing those contrasts.”
Produced in association with Firehall Arts Centre and Vancouver Asian Canadian Theatre (vAct), The Wrong Bashir was developed through Touchstone’s Flying Start Program – a new play incubator supporting the next generation of theatre artists. Along with dramaturgical support, the program culminates in a full-scale production as part of Touchstone’s Mainstage series. Flying Start is supported by the RBC Emerging Artists program. Starring Aman Mann, Seth Ranaweera, Neha Devi Singh, Sabrina Vellani, Parm Soor, Salim Rahemtulla, Shera Haji, Hussein Janmohamed, and Leena Manro, The Wrong Bashir runs March 2-12 at Firehall Arts Centre, 280 East Cordova Street. Find tickets and showtimes online at firehallartscentre.ca or touchstonetheatre.com
Special performances include:
Pay-What-You-Can / Talkback Tuesday: March 7 @ 7:30pm
Pay-What-You-Can / Relaxed Performance: Wednesday, March 8 @ 1pm