‘AZAD (The Rabbit and the Wolf)’: A one-night-only theater production

A blend of Armenian and Arabic folklore with Karagöz shadow puppetry

Theatre curtain

AZAD, a multimedia theatrical experience written by Syrian-Armenian-American theater and film artist Sona Tatoyan, a 2000 Wake Forest graduate, in collaboration with Jared Mezzocchi, will be performed on Thursday, Feb. 1 at 7:30 p.m. on the Tedford Stage in Scales Fine Arts Center.

The performance is free and open to the public.

AZAD is story-within-a-story-within-a-story blending Armenian and Arabic folklore with Karagöz shadow puppetry. The production is a mosaic of centuries-old myths and magic that is passed on from generation to generation through storytelling. 

Tatoyan, stranded in the otherwise abandoned Aleppo family home during the Syrian war, fears for her friend and mentor, Turkish human rights activist Osman Kavala, who was recently jailed and facing a possible life sentence. Amid this backdrop, she discovers her great-great grandfather’s handmade Karagöz shadow puppets a century after he salvaged his family and his art from the Armenian genocide. 

“These puppets have their own stories to tell; some bawdy and hilarious, others horrifying. AZAD alchemizes a radiant truth with universal implications: Those who are debased and destroyed have the power to transfigure trauma into spiritual wholeness through reframed stories that celebrate our collective resilience and humanity.”

The performance is funded by the Office of the Provost, Wake the Arts, the Interdisciplinary Arts Center at Wake Forest, the Department of Theatre and Dance, and the University’s Program for Leadership and Character.

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