On June 11, ten days before the first performances of Mary Zimmerman's much-anticipated new show, The Jungle Book, at the Goodman Theatre, Silk Road Rising artistic director Jamil Khoury fired a missive into the blogosphere that got the attention of the local theater community by blasting the writer-director.Read More
MARY RESPONDS: My Interview with Mary ZimmermanRead More
The Trouble with MaryRead More
Managing Multiple Identities: Jamil Khoury of Silk Road Rising Theater, Chicago, talks about how Arabs and others negotiate their identities in the US context and how SRR's theater and films render this dynamic through artistic expression. A production by Tamara Issak. And in-studio guest Shair Abdul Mani, NYC Imam, comments on the gap between African American and immigrant Muslims. With listener calls.
In the 2005 theater production of 10 Acrobats in an Amazing Leap of Faith, a strange thing happened to one audience member. The woman loved the play. The play, which told the story of an Egyptian family struggling to find its niche in American society, featured a genuinely loving relationship between a Muslim man and his wife.Read More
Southland native Kamal Hans will play Ashok in Silk Road Rising's readings of "The Doctor is Indian" from Aug. 3-5 in Chicago.
The readings will be directed by Anish Jethmalani and feature: Southlander Kamal Hans, Minita Gandhi, Puja Mohindra, Kelly O’Sullivan, Anita Chandwaney, Dipika Cherala, Behzad Dabu, Neal Dandade and Khurram Mozaffar.Read More
In September 2011, the Chicago theater company known as Silk Road Theatre Project changed its name to Silk Road Rising. The name switch was made in response to the organization producing online dramatic content in addition to its founding mission to produce theatrical works focusing on peoples from and of nations stretching from Japan to Italy that made up the ancient Silk Road.Read More
Founded by Jamil Khoury and Malik Gillani as a response to 9/11, the Silk Road Theatre Project quickly established itself as one of Chicago’s most exciting new theatre companies. /
Founded by Jamil Khoury and Malik Gillani as a response to 9/11, the Silk Road Theatre Project quickly established itself as one of Chicago’s most exciting new theatre companies. While the initial idea focused on intercultural exchanges with the Middle East, the company soon embraced the entire region along the historical Silk Road. The pre-modern trade route that stretched from Japan to Italy served both as a geographic guide for the new theatre company and as a metaphor for intercultural dialogue. Having won multiple awards, including the American Theatre Wing’s National Theatre Company Grant (2010), the Broadway in Chicago Emerging Theater Award (2008), and the City of Chicago’s Human Relations Award (2008), the Silk Road Theatre Project reinvented itself under the name Silk Road Rising in 2011. In addition to presenting perspectives of Silk Road cultures in live theatre performances, the new organization’s mission includes the production of “video dramas” that are exclusively available online. CAR Theater Researcher John Carnwath recently spoke with Jamil Khoury, Artistic Director of Silk Road Rising, about the reasons for the change, their new mission, and the challenges of rebranding a successful theatre company.Read More
Today, Chicago Theatre Off Book is reviewing exciting offerings from local theatre companies. In addition, we chat with Kevin Theis, Seanachai Theatre ensemble member and director for “Moon for the Misbegotten,” Jamil Khoury, Founding Artistic Director at Silk Road Rising and creator of “Re-Spiced,” and Steve Scott, Associate Producer for Goodman Theatre and director of “Re-Spiced.” And of course, we have two new Got A Minute?segments from local playwrights.Read More
Cultural exchange highlights a partnership developed between Valparaiso University and Chicago-based theatre company Silk Road Rising /
Valpo University Cultural exchange highlights a partnership developed between Valparaiso University and Chicago-based theatre company Silk Road Rising. Silk Road Rising creates live theatre and online videos that tell stories through primarily Asian American and Middle Eastern American lenses. They support a polycultural worldview, which differs from a multicultural understanding in that they focus on the overlapping aspects of cultures.Read More
Written by Zach Freeman, Brian Hieggelke, Sharon Hoyer and Dennis Polkow
Jamil Khoury and his partner Malik Gillani founded Silk Road Theatre Project in the wake of 9/11 to focus on Middle Eastern and Asian (“Silk Road”) themes as the hostility toward many of the peoples in and from those regions reached a fever pitch here in the States. They’ve been successful at building the company both fiscally—they were a recipient of the Broadway In Chicago award—and critically—their production of David Henry Hwang’s “Yellow Face” was one of last year’s highlights, and Khoury’s playwriting, from “Precious Stones” to his group-written creation “DNA Trail,” have been a foundational element from day one. However, Khoury and Gillani have come to realize that their audience is much larger than Chicago—it is truly global—and as such, have recently rechristened themselves Silk Road Rising and launched a series of online video plays, written by Khoury and entitled “Mosque Alert.” That they’re seeking a global audience does not mean they’ve forsaken live theater, though. In fact, Khoury’s created and curated “Re-Spiced: A Silk Road Cabaret” that opens in April under the direction of Steve Scott.Read More
It’s a little crazy to change a brand name you’ve only recently managed to establish. So when Jamil Khoury told me (during his interview for the Reader’s People Issue), that Silk Road Theatre Project, founded in 2002 by himself and his partner, Malik Gillani, underwent a name change three months ago, I was surprised.Read More
Silk Road was founded in 2002 as a response to 9/11. Had 9/11 not happened, we probably would still be leading our other lives, which were not in the theater. [Cofounder] Malik [Gillani] was an IT consultant, and I was an international relocation consultant.Read More
About five years ago, Chay Yew, a playwright and the artistic director of the Victory Gardens Theater in Chicago, was approached by schools for copies of Asian American plays that could be taught and performed. Except Yew couldn’t find a recent compilation of Asian American plays. So when Theatre Communications Group (TCG) approached him about editing a new anthology, he agreed, and the result is “Version 3.0,” released by TCG yesterday.Read More
Silk Road Theatre Project is rolling out a new series of short-form video plays designed to be accessible to mobile device and tablet users, shot cinematically, on theater sets, sometimes followed by live or online discussion.Read More
There are times when staff members at Silk Road Theatre Project might look askance at Malik Gillani, the company's executive director. Sure, he's a founder of the Chicago theater company, but he's really a businessman who loves the arts.
Mr. Gillani recently finished a certificate program at Northwestern's Kellogg School of Management. His focus was non-profit management.Read More
Based on his name, 44-year-old Chicago playwright Jamil Khoury says that people expect him to be African-American or “stereotypically” Middle Eastern.Read More
When two planes hit the World Trade Center on Sept. 11, 2001, Malik Gillani’s world turned upside down.
The information technology consultant who was born in Pakistan and moved to the U.S. went from being someone his clients trusted to someone who frightened them.Read More