VIDEO: Omar Musa on SINCE ALI DIED
This January, rapper, poet and award-winning Omar Musa brings his critically acclaimed show Since Ali Died back to Griffin Theatre Company for Sydney Festival following triumphant sold-out runs at Griffin's inaugural Batch Festival and Darwin Festival in 2018. Using the death of his hero Muhammad Ali as a lyrical springboard, Musa dives into a furious torrent of poetry, story and song, confronting everything from suburban violence to lost love to his Malaysian heritage-and the dark realities of growing up as a brown-skinned Muslim boy in Queanbeyan. Award-winning director Anthea Williams is once again at the helm of this livewire, hypnotic and totally unmissable hour of theatre.
OMAR MUSA is a Malaysian-Australian rapper, poet and author from Queanbeyan. In his writing and music, he confronts the dark realities of Australian history and culture. He has released two solo hip hop records and an album with international duo MoneyKat. Musa's debut novel Here Come the Dogs has received widespread critical acclaim and praise from novelists Irvine Welsh and Christos Tsiolkas. He has recently toured across Asia, USA, Europe, South America and Australia, performing spoken word and hip hop, to launch the book. His diverse career achievements include being long listed for the Miles Franklin Award and named one of the SMH's Young Novelists of the Year in 2015, winning the Australian Poetry Slam in 2008, receiving a standing ovation at TEDx Sydney and releasing three books of poetry: The Clocks (2009), Parang (2013) and Millefiori (2017).
Anthea Williams is a director and dramaturg who specialises in new work. For Belvoir she has directed Hir, Kill the Messenger, Cinderella and Old Man. She was awarded Best Director in a Mainstage Production at the Sydney Theatre Awards 2017 for Hir, which won several other awards, including Best Mainstage Production. For London's Bush Theatre she directed Two Cigarettes, 50 Ways to Leave Your Lover, Turf, suddenlossofdignity.com, The Great British Country Fete. Anthea's other directing credits include Flight Paths (National Theatre of Parramatta), The Colby Sisters of Pittsburgh Pennsylvania (NIDA) #KillAllMen (NIDA), and gin cabaret Mother's Ruin, which since 2016 has been performed in Australia and internationally, including a recent UK tour. Anthea is a Churchill Fellowship recipient for 2018.