European Theater House

The Freedom Theatre performs The Siege in New York in October

The Siege, one of The Freedom Theatre’s most successful and controversial productions, will be performed at The Jack H. Skirball Center for the Performing Arts, New York City, during October 12-22. The North American premiere of The Siege is produced in association with ArKtype / Thomas O. Kriegsmann and the US-based Friends of the Freedom Theatre. Performance details and tickets.

The Siege, co-directed by Nabil Al-Raee and Zoe Lafferty, was originally produced in spring 2015 and toured the UK, receiving exceptional reviews. The tour included ten venues across Britain and twenty performances of which almost all were sold-out. “One would struggle to find a more authentic piece of theatre, or indeed one that speaks to such a brutally urgent case of injustice” stated The Public Reviews, while The Guardian wrote: “It develops into an unexpectedly compelling theatrical experience with a rough and ready energy, and, in the very act of its telling, speaks for the voiceless and forgotten.” The Siege has since been re-staged and performed at The Freedom Theatre in Jenin in 2016.

The play is an artistic reflection on the Israeli army’s 39-day siege of the Church of the Nativity in Bethlehem during the height of the second Intifada in 2002. While the dramatic scenes of the 2002 siege made headlines worldwide, the fighters, clergy and civilians trapped inside the church were not heard. With The Siege, The Freedom Theatre tells the story from the perspective of some of the people who lived through those fateful 39 days. Read more about the play.

“We chose to portray the siege of the Church of the Nativity because it was such an important event in Palestinian society”, said Nabil Al-Raee, co-director and writer of The Siege. “It is still important for a lot of people, especially for the fighters who were exiled indefinitely, and for their families. We used the story of the siege of Bethlehem to speak about the siege of Palestine that is ongoing since 1948.”

Performances of The Siege at the Skirball Center will be accompanied by discussions, as well as panels and events examining the complexity of viewpoints surrounding one of the world’s most troubling political situations and human rights causes.

Media Contact:
Thomas O. Kriegsmann, ArKtype
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., 917-386-5468

The Siege will play 10 performances, October 12-22 as follows: Tuesday–Saturday at 7:30 pm; Sunday matinees at 3 pm. Tickets start at $70 and may be purchased online at, by phone at 212.998.4941, or in person at the NYU Skirball Center Box Office: Tuesday-Saturday, 12:00–6:00 pm.
NYU Skirball is located at 566 LaGuardia Place at Washington Square, New York, New York 10012. Subways: A, B, C, D, E, F, M to West 4th St.; N & R to 8th Street; 6 to Astor Place.