04/26/2023, 19.30 – 20.30

In Persian with German and English surtitles

Followed by a post-show talk

است (ist)

by Parnia Shams and Amir Ebrahimzadeh
Director: Parnia Shams

A classroom in a private girls’ school in Tehran. 16-year-old Mahoor joins the class in the middle of the school year. Her parents live in the north of the country, and have just got divorced. In her new class, Mahoor quickly becomes the centre of attention and the focus of curiosity and jealousy. She befriends the top pupil, Parnia. This friendship is quickly viewed with suspicion and is maligned in the class and especially by the teachers. According to the school board, the friendship crosses the border into the improper in an unacceptable way and is »abnormal« and »subversive«. Both pupils are forced to sign a statement attesting that theirs is a purely platonic friendship between two girls and not a love affair. They deal with this ordeal in very different ways. The production » است « (Persian for »is«) was developed by the young writer, actor and director Parnia Shams with six other theatre graduates from Sooreh University in Tehran and is based on their own experiences. The setting and action reflect the reality of surveillance and repression as closely as possible with one crucial difference to the situation in real girls’ schools: in the play, only the pupils have a voice. The entire power apparatus of the teachers and the school board which monitors, disciplines and ultimately suppresses the most intimate relationships within the school only exists through the performance of the pupils.

Parnia Shams studied theatre directing at Sooreh University in Tehran. As a stage actor, she has appeared in »Speak Medea« (2015), »The Beginning of a Symphony« (2016) and »Ghorb an Gaah« (2017). Alongside her acting work, she began to write and direct her own plays starting with »Tatavor« for which she has received several awards. She wrote and directed » است (is)« in 2018. The production won several awards at the International University Festival in Tehran in 2019 and has since toured in Tehran and internationally. She is appearing in Germany for the first time at the FIND

With: Mahtab Karimi, Sadaf Maleki, Mahoor Mirzanezhad, Yasaman Rasouli, Shadi Safshekan, Parnia Shams, Parvaneh Zabeh. Dramaturgy: Shahab Rahmani
Set Design: Pourya Akhavan
Costume Design: Pegah Shams
Assistant Director: Mahmood Khodaverdi
Lighting Design: Alireza Miranjom
Graphic Design: Mohammed Mosavat
Distribution: NH Theatre Agency



Duration: ca. 60 minutes

ت (is) is presented together by the Festival Internationale Neue Dramatik (FIND) of the Schaubühne Berlin, the Festival Theaterformen in Hanover, the 22nd International Schiller Days at the Nationaltheater Mannheim and the Festival Theater der Welt 2023 in Frankfurt and Offenbach am Main

The guest performance is supported by the Rudolf Augstein Foundation