Friday, May 21

Extreme Prevention & Walls Click for more info

Despite wanting to, I've never really got the chance to go to a Muju performance before. I guess the thing which prompted me to go this time was that half of the show was going to be them putting on a piece by Alia Bano of Shades fame.

Walls went on for twenty minutes and was about two best mates, one a not-so-practising Muslim and the other a rich Jew and how the latter planning to leave for Israel affects their relationship. Twenty minutes wasn't enough to explore this whole set up properly, although as a basis for something larger (the writer insisted that it was a work in progress) the promise was certainly there.

Clearly not as polished as Shades was, there was much left to be desired about all aspects of the performance. The script wasn't stellar (although there were a few gems), the plot slightly forced and construed, and the acting a bit shabby (I noticed a few forgotten lines and fluffs). Still seeing as how Muju is a charity where most of the human resources are volunteers, it would have been a bit unreasonable to expect a full theatrical performance.

The second half of the evening was spent on a series of comedy sketches titled "Extreme Prevention". I can't remember any which I didn't laugh hard at, and I was surprised at how far some of the jokes went - both the suggestion to abort a potential terrorist foetus and the Jew who had a bagel stuck on his, well, you know thing raised a couple of eyebrows between my giggles. I was more glad that the show wasn't worried about pushing the boundary just because it had a faith element in its constitution. In that sense it was braver and so more effective than some of the other "Muslim comedy" I've had the chance to check out. I especially liked how both Prevent and Quilliam got a good knocking. About time.

All in all I was quite impressed by Muju and what they had come up with. Not only were they quite talented as an amateur group, but they managed to avoid most of the pitfalls that come with faith based initiatives; something the probably achieved by virtue of leaping off more than one faith. I look forward to what they have to offer next.

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