Nabil Elouahabi, former star of EastEnders and Top Boy, will appear in new Palestinian play Fireworks when it runs at the Royal Court next month.
Elouahabi, who played Tariq in the long-running BBC soap opera, is joined in the production by celebrated Palestinian actor Saleh Bakri, Sirine Saba and Shereen Martin. Four young actors – George Karageorgis, Yusuf Hofri, Shakira Riddell-Morales and Eden Nathenson – will share the child roles, performing on alternate evenings.
Fireworks, which is written by Dalia Tala, has been inspired by recent events in Gaza and explores their effect on children. It follows two children, 11-year-old Lubna and 12-year-old Khalil, who play on an apartment block stairwell while the siege intensifies outside. Fear for their safety becomes as crippling as the conflict itself.
Unusually for the Royal Court, the cast, which will be directed by Richard Twyman, are all new to the Sloane Square venue, though they have a wealth of stage experience between them. Elouahabi is a regular at Kilburn’s Tricycle theatre, where his credits include The Great Game and Crossing Jerusalem, Saba has worked with major companies including the National Theatre, Royal Shakespeare Company, Regent’s Park Open Air Theatre and Shakespeare’s Globe, while Martin was most recently seen at the Southwark Playhouse taking the title role in The Only True History of Lizzie Finn.
Fireworks runs at the Royal Court Jerwood Theatre Upstairs from 12 February, following current production Liberian Girl, an immersive story of survival set during the Liberian Civil War.