Monkey Poster 1 | Silk Road Cultural Center

Written by Shail Modi
In Partnership with Avalanche Theatre as part of the Next Draft Series
Sep 28 & 30
7:30 PM – 9:30 PM

The Little Studio,
Fine Arts Building,
410 S Michigan Ave,
Studio 732,
Chicago, IL 60605, USA


A young poet, Kai, has a monkey on his back. He thinks completing his late mother's final rites might lift that weight, and figures returning to India for his father's remarriage to a nice man named Mike is a meaningful and proper time to do so. But things get complicated when his mom's ashes get lost in transit. A funny and heartfelt journey to India which explores how words are never enough when it comes to family and heritage.


get tickets img | Silk Road Cultural Center


Black Bear Island darker no spots 1 | Silk Road Cultural Center

Workshop Production

Written by Karissa Murrell Myers

Co-Produced with Stage Center Theatre at Northeastern Illinois University

Co-Directed by Jonathan Shaboo and Dan Washelesky


Performance Venue:

Stage Center Theatre 
Building F  
Northeastern Illinois University 
3701 W Bryn Mawr Ave 
Chicago, IL 60625


You won’t want to miss Myers’ riveting new gothic magical-realism thriller!


Amitra never believed the myth about her old island hometown. But when Warren, her estranged childhood sweetheart, dies mysteriously and bequeaths her everything he owned, she returns to the island one last time. As the forest begins to engulf the house and the past collides with the present, Amitra is determined to discover the truth about who Warren really was and what actually happened to him.


Performance Schedule:



Screen Shot 2024 01 18 at 4.33.15 PM original | Silk Road Cultural Center


road less traveled | Silk Road Cultural Center

Written by Lyra Nalan

Conceived by Jamil Khoury

In Partnership with Peacedale Global Arts


Road Less Traveled is an evolving live theatre piece, conceived by Jamil Khoury and written by Lyra Nalan, that parallels Robert Frost’s iconic poem, “The Road Not Taken” (1915) with the extraordinary life of Chinese American trailblazer Tye Leung Schulze (1887-1972). The poem provides a fascinating framework for mapping Tye’s life choices and the legacy she left behind. Nalan’s experience as a Chinese immigrant storyteller offers a unique window into America’s ongoing conversations about choice, individualism, and freedom through a creative imagining of Tye Leung Schulze’s road less traveled.

eve bigger apple | Silk Road Cultural Center

Written by George Abraham and Fargo Nissim Tbakhi


In Partnership with Arab American National Museum, Mizna, and National Performance Network


EVE is a collaborative performance project which deconstructs John Milton’s Paradise Lost, and the Adam & Eve myth, through the lens of Palestinian liberation. Using puppetry, movement, poetry, and song, EVE queers, disrupts, re-imagines, and stitches together multiple timelines: from pre-Adamic origin stories to Milton’s life to the existential and lonely spaces of the Palestinian diaspora. At a juncture where Ars Poetica meets myth, EVE links seemingly disparate histories to a more hopeful and vibrant sense of future and homeland.


Queer Palestinian American Co-Creators, George Abraham and Fargo Nissim Tbakhi, first workshopped a performance of EVE at the Arab American National Museum in Dearborn, Michigan in 2021. George and Fargo are continuing to develop the piece with the goal of presenting a revised version of EVE as part of a collaboration with the Arab American National Museum, Mizna, National Performance Network, and Silk Road Cultural Center.

Christmas Mubarak tells the stories of Jesus and Mary as they appear in Islamic scripture, commentary, and tradition. In exploring the lives of history’s two most famous Galilean Jews, Christmas Mubarak situates Islam within a familiar Abrahamic context and dismantles the othering of Muslim beliefs. The piece draws parallels and distinctions between Islamic and Christian theologies through a beautiful coupling of images and motifs. Our vision for this project is to build a framework for greater Christian - Muslim collaboration.

Christmas Mubarak was conceived by Malik Gillani and Jamil Khoury. In 2018, Silk Road Rising produced a successful two-week workshop production of the piece that was adapted and directed by Corey Pond.

The art of Aphasia | Silk Road Cultural Center

Written by Malik Gillani and Jamil Khoury


In Partnership with Texas Tech University’s Stroke and Aphasia Recovery (STAR) program at Texas Tech University’s Health Sciences Center and the J.T. & Margaret Talkington College of Visual and Performing Arts at TTU


In 2019, Silk Road Cultural Center Founding Executive Director, Malik Gillani, suffered a stroke that resulted in aphasia (a language disorder) and apraxia of speech (a speech disorder). Silk Road Rising has since made a commitment to generating awareness around these little-known yet common conditions, and to showcase Silk Road experiences within stroke recovery discourse.


Silk Road Cultural Center is developing The Art of Aphasia, a live theatre production that centers Malik’s aphasia journey and his relentless determination to regain his voice. Amplifying the very intersectional story a disabled, Muslim, queer, immigrant, person of color is critical to expanding representation around neurodiversity and disability justice.

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