This poetic performance is taking place in celebration of the ‘Arab American Heritage Month’, at the International Institute of Metro Detroit. Habibah (Biba) Sheikh will perform texts, from her newly released book, “Akashic Diaries: Detroit Degree Zero, and other crisis writings” (published by Europia Productions – Paris, available both on paper book and e-book format).
Through the presentation, Middle Eastern musicians will accompany her on the storytelling journey. The book will be available for purchase. Proceeds will go towards a scholarship program for Arab American students of low income.
Some of the live recordings of these texts might be featured on the album produced by Transcultures (interdisciplinary center of sound and digital cultures – Belgium) on its Transonic label with the support of the Pépinières européennes de Création (international network for the mobility of contemporary arts), where recitations of the text and book are produced in unison with soundscapes directed by Belgian/French sound artist/producer ‘Paradise Now’.
At the event, visual arts will be featured from Biba Sheikh’s exhibition Biba Sheikh, titled, ‘Mitli Mitlak (Like You, Like Me)’, in correlation with 13 Mediterranean and Middle Eastern artists who have created a visual storytelling based on her literary script, titled also ‘Mitli Mitlak’.
Bibah Sheikh (Lb/USA)
Habibah Sheikh began studying mime with Marcel Marceau in Paris and later with members of the Polish Laboratory Theater of Jerzy Grotowski. She developed vocal work in relation to voice anthropologist, Jorge Lopez, who researched singing methods from indigenous tribes of south america. She has a nomadic existence and has gathered inspiration for her storytelling & performance art from a number of different cultures: USA, Paris, Sevilla (with the Gypsy/Roma population), Berlin, Amsterdam, Beirut, and Greece. Habibah lovingly says that Greece is her place of catharsis. There she set up a platform with 13 artists from the Mediterranean, who make visual works based on her stories and theater pieces, which she began writing during her journey with vulnerable populations with the “abandoned children” of Lebanon. After the war left these young people alone, Habibah felt a strong responsibility in order to help them find their voices through storytelling platforms.
The project titled, “Mitli Mitlak (Like You, Like Me)” is a visual and literary exhibition, and theatre production where art- works are based on the theater scripts of ‘Right To Live, as well as “Mitli Mitlak”. This ongoing interdisciplinary project is produced by Habibah’s global arts company, Mediterranean Fire Studio, in collaboration with the Third Avenue Playhouse, Sturgeon Bay, Wisconsin. January-March 2019 and taking place at N’Namdi Center for Contemporary Art, Detroit 2018. Central Michigan University Art Gallery, 2019, Miller Art Museum, Wisconsin, 2019, Peeler Art Center, Depauw Indiana, 2020. Sponsors include the National Endowment for the Arts, The State of Wisconsin, and other business sponsors.
She has a series of writings related to the Civil War of Lebanon, Syrian Refugee plights, Andalusian Gypsies, and the Greek Crisis.
Her work is featured in the film, ‘Citizen Xenos’, by Lucas Paleocrassas, which follows life in refugee camps, where refugees, engaged in theater and voice workshops, express what they had endured. She is devoted to vocal interpretation, acting, and poetic text. The physical and vocal interpretations are further accentuated by years of personal Flamenco study.
Recently, the theater production, ‘I Am the Small Seed’ was developed in an Art Residency at the Born Global Foundation. Musical segments are in collaboration with sound artist Paradise Now (Fr/Be). It provides Habibah Sheikh the possibility to devise a unique method of storytelling and theater, where a game-like structure contains healing acts, and can be performed by actors and non actors alike. It has been performed in Lebanon, Scotland, and the USA. She is currently writing, performing and producing, ‘Nomadic Poetic Stories (How I Opened My Heart Through the Extinction of Mime, the Miracles in Paris, and Meetings With a Mysterious Man, Across the World)’ featuring Chinese musician Xia Dong Wei.
Her first book, “Akashic Diaries: Detroit Degree Zero and Other Crisis Writings’ is released in Spring 2023 on Europia Productions (Paris). It is accompanied by a sound art/poetry album comprising readings and vocalizations of the some of “Akashic Diaries” texts, in collaboration with sound artist/producer Paradise Now.
- 27.04.2023 postponed to the 29.04.2023 | 18 > 21:00
- International Institute of Metro Detroit
- 111 John R St, Detroit, MI 48226, USA
- Reservation : firstname.lastname@example.org
- Mediterranean Fire Studio, in collaboration with Third Avenue Playhouse, Sturgeon Bay, Wisconsin
- With the support of Transcultures and European Pepinieres of Creation