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First Drafts: The Orchard of Lost Souls

02 August

Fio – Abdul Shayek & Yusra Warsama

Tickets £5

Adapted from the novel by the Somali-British author Nadifa Mohamed, The Orchard of Lost Souls tells the story of the civil war breaking out in Somalia through the eyes of three women: a nine-year-old orphan, a widower and a female soldier.




Fio creates theatre with people of all ages, religions and backgrounds, using performance to help them tell stories that are as momentous and unique as they are themselves.  Fio works across 3 strands – People (providing training and development opportunities), Projects (engagement and breaking down barriers) and Productions (creating professional productions).


Abdul is a Theatre Director and Artistic Director of Fio (which he founded in 2005) and recently directed Swarm, a site-specific show about migration, and Katori Hall’s The Mountaintop at The Other Room. He is former Creative Associate for National Theatre Wales and has worked with a range of organisations including Contact Theatre, Theatre Royal Stratford East and The Almeida. He is a visiting lecturer at University of East London and has guest lectured at various other institutions. He is also a National Advisor to Arts Council Wales and is Vice Chair of Youth Arts Network Cymru. Abdul is a Clore Cultural Leadership Fellow (2013-14) and has sat on the steering group of the National Alliance for Arts in the Criminal Justice System.


Yusra Warsama is a performance poet, actor, writer and theatre practitioner, her passions lie in creating work through play and exploration of life experiences in world we live in. Past, present and future work takes many forms, from her developing a one woman show which uses spoken word, storytelling, live art and physical expression, to Grace (05) and Make – Believe (09) with Quarantine, which looks at exploring theatre without focus on characters but rather the one-to-one relationship between performer and audience. She created Rites with Olivier-Award-winning Cora Bissett about FGM.