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Writer-sculptor Nadine Abou Zaki employs the skills of both practices to tell the story of a village from the perspective of an ancient tree standing at the nexus of several houses – a silent witness to the lives of the families within.The show opens with an end – the mulberry tree's death.A philosophy professor teaching at the American University of Beirut, Abou Zaki entwined her story of the inner-life of the trees and the histories of the villagers with a retelling of the Pyramus and Thisbe myth, from Ovid's "Metamorphoses".The Zanzalakht tree is called "Thisbe" throughout Abou Zaki's story, and the two trees assume the roles of the lovers.The blood that soaks the mulberry tree's roots is not that of Thisbe and Pyramus, however, but that of an orphan girl in the village who loses her virginity to Halim – whose mother (a compelling Roueida el-Ghali) sweeps the mulberry tree's leaves from her stoop each day and used one of its branches to help her conceive.
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