Lantern Islamic Theater Company presents ’Stories of Our Youth’

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Mohamed Amin wanted to share a play that many of his fellow Muslims could identify with and laugh. 

‘“Stories of our Youth’ explores the complexities, awkwardness, hardships and silver-linings of the journeys many Muslim youth face growing up in the United States,” said Amin, who has written the play and will direct it. “These overtly satirical and comedic stories allow for genuine conversations on the personal and interpersonal struggles of young Muslim people, as they navigate to find their right place in this world, and in their faith.”

This is the first play from Amin’s Lantern Islamic Theater Company. “Stories of our Youth” is set for 6:30 p.m. Aug. 12-13 at Eman Schools, 11965 Allisonville Rd., Fishers. It is funded by Alhuda Foundation.

“I place some serious tones to it,” Amin said. “It’s family-friendly. I recommend it not just to Muslim (attendees) but all.”

Amin, a 2015 Carmel High School graduate who lives in Zionsville, said the theater is open to anyone in the Indianapolis area.

“I started this company because I really have a passion for nonprofit community theater,” he said. “I really want theater to be accessible to all kinds of populations. I wanted people of all ages, actors especially.” 

Amin said he received advice from professional scriptwriters.

“This is the first time many in the cast have acted,” he said. “However the play turns out, whether it’s remarkable or mediocre, I’m just so proud of this cast.”

Eventually, Amin would like  Lantern Islamic Theater Company to host six productions a year.

Amin said he was involved in theater at CHS but became more heavily involved in theater at IUPUI.

“I had a bigger leadership role there than I did in Carmel,” Amin said. “I got to direct my own very small play there. I got a scholarship where I got to perform an annual fall production for the school, called ‘Tunnel of Oppression.’ College shaped me to become more a director than acting.”

Nouran Amin, Mohamad Amin’s sister, is acting for the first time. 

“It’s a good opportunity to participate in a community project,” Nouran said. “This gives Muslim youth (an opportunity) to express a side of themselves they didn’t know they had. To me, it was a good opportunity to step away from science and technical things and express myself in a different way.”

Malek Wanas, a fifth-grader at Riverside Intermediate School in Fishers, has acted in school plays.

“I like the moments where everyone is communicating with each other,” Wanas said.

Hana  Shatara Sobers, a Whitestown resident, joined the play because her 8-year-old son, Nablus, wanted to get into theater. Her older son, Qudus, 11, also is in the play.

“It’s very real,” Shatara Sobers said of the play. “The scenes happen in our community, but could be applicable to society as a whole. Some scenes deal with COVID-19 and being isolated.

Noblesville High School sophomore Ghadir Tamimi said she enjoyed making friends with the cast.

“It’s become a homey environment,” Tamimi said. “I think it’s a play that pokes fun at some of the problems.”

For tickets, visit eventbrite.com/e/stories-of-our-youth-tickets-369657354097.

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