Some say that the watershed moments during our childhood define who we eventually become. But who knows? Maybe it is just that who we will become gives away its first glimpses when we are little. This is the story of the naïve courage and delicate strength of a little girl—nothing fancy, yet so close to the heart.
Written and Performed by
Ayse Coskun (she/her)
Cheyenne Barboza (she/her)
Filmed and Edited by
Maher Mahmood (he/him)
Line Produced by
Samuel Morreale (they/them)
Premieres Thursday, October 28 at 7PM EST
The Play Writers Festival was made possible by the support of The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation
Ayse Coskunshe/her Playwright & Performer
Born and raised in Turkey, Ayse Coskun trained as a physician at Istanbul University and now serves as an Associate Research Scientist at the Yale Medical School in the Surgery department. After completing a doctorate, Ayse got her MA in Islamic Studies and Christian & Muslim Relations from Hartford Seminary. She is a physician, scientist, researcher, poet, storyteller, interfaith and intercultural dialogue activist, community organizer, and most importantly, a traveler on a delightful quest to discover the Divine intent behind existence.
Cheyenne Barbozashe/her Director
Cheyenne Barboza is an award-winning director and playwright hailing from Waterbury, CT. Her director credits include: The Secret Life of Wonder: A Prologue in G (Antipodes Theatre, NSW, ReFocus Fest), Grace (IAMA), The Agitators (Theatre Horizon), The Wiz (Theatre in the X), The Last Seven Shakers (InterAct Theatre Co.), Cartons of Ultrasounds (ReFocus Fest), Trade (Inis Nua Theatre Co.), Directors JAM (Pirronne Yousefzadeh & Directors Gathering); and as assistant director: How I Learned What I Learned (Dir. Malika Oyetimein, Arden Theatre Co.), The Mountaintop (Dir. Patricia McGregor, PTC); and as playwright: Running Numbers (Theatre in the X).
Cheyenne currently serves as the Community Partnerships and Literary Associate at Long Wharf Theatre. She received a BFA in Directing, Playwriting & Production from The University of the Arts. “Sending blessings and gratitude to the legion of Black women who help keep her whole, I am but one branch of a mighty tree.”
Maher Mahmoodhe/him Videographer and Editor
Maher Mahmood is a photographer, videographer, and Iraqi refuge who uses his talents to tell his story and the stories of those around him. Since the age of thirteen, photography has been Maher’s passion—a passion that has given him purpose that he’s poured his heart and soul into. When Maher’s family fled the war in Iraq, leaving everything behind, they first arrived in Jordan. He used his camera lens to capture his experience as a refugee. In 2014, his family was welcomed into the United States and New Haven, Connecticut became his new home. For the past five years, Maher has had the privilege of helping people capture the moments most important to them including graduations, weddings, and the growth of their families. Maher’s grateful for opportunities to learn from fellow artists from around the world, including former colleagues at Google and Yale, and for helping his grow his love of photography, film, and marketing. Photography and video will forever be Maher’s passion and purpose.
Sam Morrealethey/them Line Producer
Sam Morreale (they/them) is an Artistic Producer, Director, and Facilitator who approaches work with a dramaturgical lens rooted in anti-racism and anti-oppression. They are an avid supporter of art for social change and gravitate towards stories and people that uplift the lives of those who have been caught in the margins of society. Sam works to reckon with and readjust the theatrical cannon by re-centering QTBIPOC voices as a space-making advocate for these communities, particularly from within predominantly and historically white institutions. After receiving a BA from Wesleyan University in Theater and Science Studies, Sam moved on to work with New York Stage and Film at Vassar College, Penumbra Theatre, Mixed Blood Theatre, Baltimore Center Stage, and the Theatre Communications Group. Sam understands their career path as one which continues to push institutions to spaces of deep listening in order to ensure that their actions align with social justice and the movement for progressive change. Sam sends deep gratitude to the community of Long Wharf Theatre for bringing them into this process, and to the artists for trusting them with their work.