National Theatre stars explore Syrian conflict at Seamus Heaney HomePlace

June 13, 2017

Award-winning Irish actress Olwen Fouéré and Syrian opera singer Lubana Al Quntar are to collaborate on a unique project exploring the Syrian conflict through Heaney’s collection The Spirit Level, at Seamus Heaney HomePlace on Saturday 24 June.
 
Currently starring together in Salomé at the National Theatre in London, Olwen and Lubana will take part in the latest in a series of events at HomePlace called Performance Reflections, which invites a leading artist to respond – in whatever way they choose – to one of Seamus Heaney’s poetry collections.

The evening will be centered around Olwen’s performance the epic poem Mycenae Lookout from the collection, in addition to musical contributions from Lubana.
 
Speaking from the rehearsal room, Olwen said:
 
“The Spirit Level explores issues of conflict and post-conflict society and Syria is one of the most potent areas of conflict in our world at the moment.  I am thrilled that Lubana, as one of that country’s most prominent artists, is able to collaborate on the event with me, to bring a fresh perspective on the conflict through her native music and Heaney’s words.”
 
Trained at the Royal College of Music in London, Lubana Al Quntar was the Head of the Opera Department at the High Institute of Music in Damascus, where she taught opera and Arabic singing techniques.  Known as “Syria’s First Opera Singer”, she was forced to flee the country as a refugee in 2012 and now lives in the U.S., where she has performed in numerous venues, including the Kennedy Center.
 
Olwen Fouéré is an actor, director and creative artist who has worked with the Abbey Theatre, Gate Theatre, the Royal National Theatre in the UK and with numerous companies in France, Australia and the USA. She has performed her recent creation, the internationally acclaimed "riverrun" (an adaptation of the voice of the river in James Joyce's “Finnegan’s Wake”), across the globe and has starred on film with Sean Penn in “This Must Be the Place” and in “The Survivalist” by director Stephen Fingleton. 
 
Tickets for “Performance Reflections on The Spirit Level” are £10 and are available to book online here.