By Brian Robin
Your Invitation Awaits
Michael Shayan called avaaz “the most personal play I’ve ever written.” And SCR extends an invitation to see the world premiere of avaaz on the Segerstrom Stage, April 29-May 27, 2023 as part of the 25th Pacific Playwrights Festival.
Written and performed by Shayan—one of the country’s most promising emerging writers—avaaz is a funny and deeply personal tribute to the playwright’s mother, who he also portrays in the one-person play. avaaz brings great humor and heart to universal questions and themes which are especially urgent given the ongoing woman-led revolution happening right now in Iran.
Directed by Tony Award nominee Moritz von Stuelpnagel (Hand to God), avaaz introduces you to Roya, our fabulous hostess, as she welcomes you into her home to celebrate Nowruz, the Iranian New Year. She’s preparing a feast, but the main attraction is Roya sharing her great American journey from Tehran to “Tehran-geles,” California. Get ready for the time of your life with this hilarious and deeply personal tribute to the playwright’s mother, deliciously portrayed by the person who knows her best—her son. Traditions, humor and passionate storytelling transform this tale of family bonds into an unforgettable theatre event.
Shayan, a graduate of Harvard with a Masters of Fine Arts in Playwriting from Brooklyn College, was a consulting producer for the Discovery+ series “The Book of Queer” and worked on the Emmy Award-winning HBO Max show “We’re Here.” avaaz received development grants from Sundance Institute and Theatre Aspen.
Shayan was a Lambda Literary Playwriting Fellow and is developing original works for Audible and Geffen Playhouse, among others. At age 13, he was the youngest performer in the history of Hollywood’s Magic Castle.