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Who is to blame when a family kills one of their own?


Every year an estimated 5000 women worldwide are murdered by their own families in so-called honour killings, 12 of them in the UK. 'Silkmoth' places onstage a mother. We are her guests at home. This one-woman performance raises powerful questions are immediately raised: what is her role in this horrific 'tradition' ? Is she a victim, submissive, or coldly complicit? But she conveys that, from the moment a daughter is born, she represents shame, dishonour and sexual provocation, all of which have to be washed away into non existence. The raw energy of Ensemble Zar is scattered around the space, engulfing the audience and the mother, immersed to experience this audio visual landscape that leads to it's shocking cultural conclusion.


Based on a series of community workshops and interviews for research had in partnership with IKWRO, Iranian and Kurdish Women’s Rights Organisation, this is an important work that is both a controversial and sensitive issue, created by a team of internationally renowned artists and performers.


The creative team have worked with the idea of blurring cultural boundaries across all aspects of the production, the factual & fairytale, Eastern & Western idioms in music and dance, and blending ancient tradition and contemporary stagecraft, impacting diverse audiences on a range of sensory levels.

Performed by the cross-genre ensemble, Ensemble Zar (up to 6 performers) and the London-based Palestinian soprano, Enas Massalha (La Scala Milan, Carnegie Hall New York), the British-Lebanese composer, Bushra El-Turk, will explore the blurred boundaries between the art forms. Collaborators include writer Eleanor Knight (Tete a Tete, ROH2), choreographer Maria Koripas (European Chamber Opera, English Touring Opera), set and costume designer Giulia Scrimieri (Tete a Tete Opera Festival, BBC TV) and the theatre director Michael Moxham (BBC Proms, ROH)

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