The documentary theatre piece Under Low Skies (Sous Un Ciel Bas) from Syrian director Wael Ali had its world premiere at Italy’s Napoli Teatro Festival this June.

Under Low Skies considers the questions surrounding theatre and reality and how they affect each other as it combines documentary with the spectacle on stage.

“How do you create theatre when the reality is affected by perpetual and violent changes? When war invades your home country whilst you are away? Who is the audience for such a theatre performance?”

The play was being performed on 21 and 22 June at the Napoli Teatro Festival, supported by the Arab Arts Focus.

Ali’s performance is part of the Arab Arts Focus, a child company of Egypt’s Studio Emad Eddin Foundation created to help produce and showcase works of theatre from the Arab world to an international audience.

Ali is a Syrian writer and director who graduated from the Higher Institute of Performing Arts in Damascus in 2004 and holds a Master’s in Performing Arts from Lumière University in Lyon, France.

In 2014, he wrote and directed You Know I Don’t Remember, which was performed at the Abbad Al-Shams Theatre in Beirut and later in other locations and at various festivals, including the Gorki Theatre in Berlin, the Maison d’Europe et d’Orient and the Confluences in Paris, the Toneelhuis in Anvers, Belgium, and at the Carthage Theatre Festival in Tunis.

In 2016, he directed Temporary Title, a text written in collaboration with Lebanese actress Chrystèle Khodr.

This piece first appeared on Ahram Online and was reposted with permission.

This post was written by the author in their personal capacity.The opinions expressed in this article are the author’s own and do not reflect the view of The Theatre Times, their staff or collaborators.