by Canopy Theatre Company

Oct. 04 - Oct. 07, 2018

How do you discover yourself when searching can result in imprisonment or death?

Mawlana, a Monodrama

by Fares al Zahaby

Music by Bernard Legros

Directed/Performed by Nawar Bulbul

In Arabic with English subtitles


Canopy Theatre, in partnership with La Scéne Theatre from Aix-en-Provence, France, launches its inaugural season with the American debut of Syrian playwright Fares al Zahaby’s daring drama Mawlana. Starring Syrian TV and Film actor, Nawar Bulbul, Mawlana opens at The VORTEX at 8 pm Thursday, October 4 and runs for only 4 nights through October 7, 2018. 


Fares al Zahaby’s courageous play questions religious ideologies and doctrines through the eyes of a young man named Abed. Set in the iconic Damascus neighborhood near the Sheikh Mohy ad-Din Ibn Arabi Mosque and Shrine, Mawlana reveals the story of Abed as he struggles to find his place amongst competing religious doctrines, Western influences, and his own inner desires. Nawar Bulbul masterfully plays Abed, as well as a colorful palette of characters from the neighborhood. Each person Abed crosses in this journey propels him towards a dangerously liberating discovery. 


Mawlana is performed in the lyrical and poetic colloquial Damascene dialect of Arabic, but also features English supertitles. Not only will Mawlana give Austin audiences a glimpse into the life of someone growing up in late 20th-century Syria, but it also will provoke serious questions about adherence to institutions of religion.


Canopy and La Scène Theatre are cultivating this joint venture between artists in Austin, Texas and Aix-en-Provence, France with the goal of building an international coalition of theatres that produce work of global significance, particularly surrounding violence, displacement, and oppression. Additionally, Canopy Theatre works to bring military veteran and refugee communities together to combat the isolation present in both conditions. Canopy Theatre is sponsored and funded in part by Vortex Repertory Company and by the Cultural Arts Division of the City of Austin Economic Development Department.



by Fares al Zahaby
Canopy Theatre Company

October 04 - October 07, 2018
Vortex Repertory Theatre
2307 Manor Road
Austin, TX, 78722

October 4-7, 2018 8 pm 

4 nights only!


The VORTEX, 2307 Manor Rd. Austin, TX 78722

Free Parking. Bus Route.

The Butterfly Bar @ The VORTEX opens nightly at 5pm with full bar and hand-crafted cocktails.

Patrizi’s @ The VORTEX opens nightly at 5pm with delicious homemade Italian food.


Tickets: $35-$15

$35 Priority Seating  

$25 General Admission 

$15 Discount/Artist/Student/Senior/Veteran

Advance Reservations Recommended.  Limited seating.     512-478-5282


Radical Rush Free Tickets: Limited free tickets for each performance in the spirit of sustainability, accessibility, and the gift economy. Radical Rush tickets released at 7pm each night-in-person only. 

Blue Star Theatre: Discounts for Military, Veterans, and their families

2-for-1 admission Thursday and Sunday with donation of 2 cans for SAFE Austin.