FOUNDING EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR MAHA CHEHLAOUI SAYS GOODBYE TO NOOR
Maha Has Been An Extraordinary Leader In The Middle Eastern American Theatre Community. We Thank Her For Her Talent, Dedication And Vision And Wish Her The Utmost Success On The Next Steps Of Her Journey. We Love You, Maha!
I will be stepping down as Noor's Executive Director as of this August. When Lameece Issaq invited me aboard 8 years ago, I had no idea what an integral part of my life Noor would become. Our artists and audience members are now my biggest sources of inspiration as well as some of my nearest and dearest friends. Noor means light, and I have been blessed to bask in the light of you all for years.
I became an artistic producer (Nibras Theatre Collective, New York Arab American Comedy Festival, Noor) in the aftermath of 9/11. It was a very complex and trying time for all of us in New York and around the world. I saw first hand the particular (and ongoing) challenges for our MENA and Muslim communities: misrepresentation in the media, surveillance, targeting and more. I will always believe in the power of art; specifically, storytelling to identify and heal the rifts among us. It is through engaging stories and the empathy and compassion aroused by them that we are brought back from our darkest selves into the light. It is in dark rooms, shoulder to shoulder, with strangers watching a protagonist find their way that we commune with one another. I have had a front row seat, so believe me when I say Noor is changing the cultural landscape of this country for the better. And that is why, even though I am passing the leadership mantle on (more on that soon!), I will always be a supporter of Noor. As an artist, a donor, an audience member - I will continue to support the growth of this company and this community.
Thank you for all your support of Noor Theatre, its mission, and my leadership.
With love and gratitude,