Photo by Sabine Choucair
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Sabine Choucair is a well-known figure in Beirut's theatrical community, a founding member of the Clown Me In troupe. For the past six months or so she's been the artistic director of "The Caravan," a street theater project that seeks to bring the voices of the Syrian refugee community to a broader public. The project commenced in January 2016, when Choucair and Beirut DC's Farah Kassem spent 40 days conducting interviews and workshops among the Syrian refugee community in Western Bekaa.The actor and the filmmaker worked with 120 women (aged 20-85), 60 men (30-65) and 50 kids (6-13) from four different camps, managed by Sawa for Development and Aid. The core cast is comprised of nonprofessional actors so the rehearsal process included training sessions involving intensive exercises in physical theater, overseen by Choucair and U.K.-based actor-director Ailin Conant.Each performance of "The Caravan" is comprised of eight stories.While enacting the stories, Choucair said, the actors use various techniques – grotesque, clowning, and so on – which tend to lighten the mood.
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