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Tamasha & Coliseum's Snookered Opens Tour in Oldham

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Snookered  - the first stage production written by Middlesbrough-based writer Ishy Din opens its UK Tour in Oldham next month. Directed by Iqbal Khan, the play was commissioned by Tamasha and developed through their Developing Artists Programme. The UK tour begins in Oldham on 2 February.

On the sixth anniversary of T’s death, his four friends meet for a game of pool and a few drinks to honour his memory. Secrets are revealed and allegiances shift as quickly as the drinks are downed. The four young men struggle with their guilt and work out whether their friendship can survive the evening.

Snookered features young men and their fragile masculinity, burdened by cultural expectations yet charged with personal dreams. The action takes place over a single evening in which tensions threaten to escalate to a point of no return.

Ishy Din says: ‘I used to be a taxi driver and now I’m a playwright who drives a taxi. I feel privileged that Tamasha has afforded me the opportunity to express myself, otherwise my voice as a northern British Asian would be muted and my attempts to open a window on a largely unexplored world would be firmly shut.’

Din’s career has ranged from video shop and restaurant ventures, to selling mobile phones and driving minicabs. During this time, he developed an ear for characters, dialogue and storylines. His first play John Barnes Saved My Life was shortlisted as part of Radio 5 Live’s Sports Shorts competition and broadcast in 2004. He wrote a piece for the BBC1 Brief Encounters series (2005); has written for BBC Radio Newcastle; and came second in the British Asian writing competition BANG! in 2007 (run by Oldham Coliseum and Tamasha). Following his subsequent participation in the Tamasha Developing Artists new writing course, Tamasha commissioned Snookered. The company has commissioned his second play Approaching Empty, part of a trilogy about the experiences of different generations of British Pakistani men in contemporary England.

Iqbal Khan will direct Much Ado About Nothing for the RSC in 2012. His recent credits include The Importance of Being Earnest, starring Gyles Brandreth, at Riverside Studios, Broken Glass (Tricycle and West End), The Killing of  Sister George (Arts Theatre, West End), Rafta Rafta (Bolton Octagon and New Vic, Newcastle-under-Lyme), East is East (Birmingham Rep), A Slight Ache and Landscape (National Theatre), Oleanna (Bolton Octagon), and Too Close to Home (Lyric Hammersmith and Library Theatre).

The tour starts at Oldham University Campus from 2 - 8 February and also takes in Lancaster, Edinburgh, Oxford, London, Southampton and Wolverhampton.


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