"Using a sly hand, Malik dispenses information through rapid fire thoughtful humor and honest dialogue that flows naturally. Fahmy's direction, Esler's scenic design, and Kengmana's lighting embrace this seamless quality by treating the show as if it were one beautiful dream sequence...It is undeniable that 'Mecca' wraps things up too tidily, however that resolution feels earned and gratifying. Like the production team, the entire cast is flawlessly marvelous." Full Review
"'The Mecca Tales' is an earnest drama that rests its overarching optimism on an individual humanism (facilitated, in the climax of play, by a community of women). With its heterogenous characters, it also works against any monolithic notion of Muslim womanhood. Malik's foregrounding of underrepresented voices enriches the tapestry of contemporary American theater." Full Review
"Playwright Malik successfully makes the pilgrimage more relatable...The production is fortunate to have an excellent cast...The whole group has a great chemistry that makes them enjoyable to watch together onstage. For a touching, humorous look at a transformative religious journey, as seen through the eyes of women, make your pilgrimage to the Sheen Center to see 'The Mecca Tales.'" Full Review
“This relatable and entertaining play shares five very diverse stories about Muslim women participating in a Hajj Pilgrimage. The actors are all professionals who are very convincing. At times, they need to plow through unrealistic dialogue but the play is informative and engaging. I think even as a piece of contemporary women's fiction, it provides a platform for lively discussion. It is also an easy way to learn a bit more about Islam.” Full Review
See it if you can put aside labels and see how 5 women deal with personal issues through faith and/or ritual
Don't see it if if you cannot see women in a hijab without finding it repressive; if you cannot see it as part of who they are (see below)
See it if Five muslim women share their personal issues and help each other to move on. Combats prejudice against muslims being regular people.
Don't see it if Sentimental one-dimensional characters who develop in obvious ways. Earnest, but with little humor. I didn’t learn much about Islam.
See it if You want a general feel for the experience of the Hajj and what it might be like to participate, and in stories of Muslim women.
Don't see it if If you aren't interested in stories about women's lives, or stories containing religion or death.
See it if You are curious about the hajj. Female characters acting out personal stories within the larger frame of the difficulties of a pilgrimage.
Don't see it if the format of stories within stories or women's lives do interest you.
See it if you enjoy a very moving drama. While on a pilgrimage to Mecca, 5 women tell their tales. Very moving, intelligent show. Nice staging.
Don't see it if you are anti Muslim although this wonderful show may change your mind.
See it if you have the chance to. Overall a great performance from the entire cast. Must see for everyone, very relatable. Perfectly written & casted.
Don't see it if nothing bad to say, go see this powerful play.
See it if You appreciate the representation of women of colour on stage. You want to support Muslim artists' work.
Don't see it if You prefer characters who are fully fleshed-out, beyond caricatures of their struggles. You prefer stories that shed a new light on gender.
See it if You love great stories of love, forgiveness, resilience, self-worth. A story powerfully portrayed by the cast.
Don't see it if You're only interest in big production musicals.
See it if you want to see an emotionally compelling play, mostly about women, who bond as they share common goals, fears, beliefs and regrets.
Don't see it if don't like shows about strong-minded women; or don't want to hear about the journey of Muslim women.
See it if you want to see women of different backgrounds come together. See problems of varying severity be addressed as they try to find themselves
Don't see it if you hate seeing women centered stories. Want an in depth analysis of Islam itself. Need a big production to enjoy yourself.
See it if You like theatre exploring different cultures and religion that connects you to a wide variety of problems that are universal.
Don't see it if You're intolerant to other religions. This is not for you and you most likely need to seek help for your hatred if you think that way.
See it if You enjoy unconventional theater, women’s stories, and learning more about Muslim experience. It deals with universal themes.
Don't see it if You are intolerant to Muslims.
See it if Enjoy good personal narrative and dialogue. Want to laugh, cry, and be moved by a story. Want to see an excellent cast.
Don't see it if You want highly technical or dramatic sets rather than focus on characters.
See it if good acting; very good script: the characters' narratives were surprisingly relatable; spiritual & profound without being overly religious
Don't see it if you don't enjoy character-driven plays or topics related to spirituality
See it if You're interested in themes of community, self-forgiveness, ritual, transcendence, love. Oh, faith/religion was in there, too.
Don't see it if You hate talk of religion or spiritual awakening, aren't interested in how diverse group of Muslim women might see the world.
See it if You want a beautiful story of Muslim women on Hadj. You want to see a wide range of emotions on stage. You want to be moved & entertained.
Don't see it if You have no interest in Muslim or women's stories.
See it if you want to see how tradition, family and religion play a big part in a woman's life.
Don't see it if you are not into strong female roles, or are ready to be emotional.
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