Nisa is young and idealistic to a fault. Lily is sharp and refuses to play by society’s rules. Fatimah is slowing down and starting to regret. Caged in by everyday life, the three women look forward to nightfall, when they can lie down and dream impossible futures together.
Described as ‘witty, enchanting and poignant’ (Global Voices Theatre) and “funny, energising... a charismatic ensemble piece” (Nick Hern Books), Inside Voices blends dark comedy and magical realism to shine a spotlight on Southeast Asian Muslim women, exploring feminism, faith and freedom. It also interrogates larger global conversations around intersectionality, Islamophobia and the #MeToo movement.
The production is presented by an all-female, all-Asian cast and creative team. The play will be published by Nick Hern Books as one of seven best new plays at VAULT Festival and is a selected festival highlight of renowned theatre critic Lyn Gardner.
Inside Voices was read at Arcola Theatre in July 2018, as part of the Global Female Voices platform curated by Global Voices Theatre, where it was voted the most promising play. It was also read at Soho Theatre. #InsideVoicesLDN at VAULT Festival marks the show’s full-scale theatrical debut.
Lazy Native is a collective creating urgent, subversive work that champions Southeast Asian narratives. Inside Voices is its debut production.
Nabilah Said is a Singaporean playwright and poet. International writing credits: Inside Voices (Soho Theatre; Arcola Theatre) and yesterday it rained salt (Bunker Theatre). Writing credits in Singapore include: ANGKAT (Festival Commission, M1 Singapore Fringe Festival), yesterday it rained salt (M1 Singapore Fringe Festival), Drip (The Necessary Stage), Tart (Teater Ekamatra), and Lost (Teater Ekamatra). Nabilah is a writer-in-residence for Sing Lit Station and contributes reviews to Exeunt Magazine.
Zhui Ning Chang is a London-based theatre director, producer and lyricist. Directing credits include: Strange Fish (Theatre N16), Wotsits (Horse & Stables Theatre), Monochrome Society (White Bear Theatre), For the Love of Wisdom (Bunker Theatre). She assistant produced for Iris Theatre’s 2018 season and is currently working with Global Voices Theatre to bring more international work to the UK.
Nur Khairiyah Ramli is a London-based producer, arts manager and performer. International producing credits: Hawa (Hatch Theatrics, Brisbane Festival) and Super Happy Land (Hatch Theatrics x Theatre Gumbo, Osaka). Producing credits in Singapore include: Lanang (Malay Heritage Centre), Hawa (Singapore Theatre Festival), Super Happy Land (Hatch Theatrics x Theatre Gumbo), Ring-a Ring-o’ Rosie (Hatch Theatrics x Theatre Gumbo). She currently coordinates productions for independent artists in Singapore and abroad.
Deanna Dzulkifli is a London-based producer who has assisted in the productions of dead was the body till I taught it how to move (Bhumi Collective) and The Tempest (Goldsmiths’ Drama Society). She assists with the work of multidisciplinary arts company, Bhumi Collective.
Playwright: Nabilah Said
Director: Zhui Ning Chang
Producer: Deanna Dzulkifli
Assistant Producer: Nur Khairiyah Ramli
Production Stage Manager: Muslihah Mujtaba
Lighting Designer: Raycher Phua
Sound Designer: Nicola Chang
Cast: Suhaili Safari, Siti Zuraida, Nur Khairiyah Ramli
Praise for previous work by Nabilah Said:
Artsequator.com for Drip (2017):
"A wisecracking and irreverent script...The dialogue crackles with its bold and crisp satire of overly pedantic, traditional Muslim mindsets. But the play’s cheekiness is compassionate, humanising the multi-faceted nature of the characters... Its comedy succeeds because of the richness and resonance of the characters.”
The Straits Times for Drip (2017):
“Drip by Nabilah Said is solid and realistic, though abyssal depths lurk beneath its comic drama... a one-act drama powered by repartee and actor chemistry.”
Bakchormeeboy.com for Drip (2017):
“Nabilah Said has a firm grasp of humour and dramatic tension, and cleverly uses language as a tool for both identity and to be wielded as a weapon of exclusion, easily brought out by her well-written characters who each have their moment to shine.”
Centre42.sg for Tart (2015):
“It is quite clear that the playwright (Nabilah Said) has an excellent ear for dialogue as the repartee between the three characters is on point from start to finish.”
The Straits Times for Lost (2012):
“The play’s blend of playfulness and absurdity helped to bring to the fore issues in Singapore that remain unresolved, such as its testy relationship with foreign workers and its crumbling physical heritage.”