ABOUT THE PLAY
During Istanbul Gezi Park Protests in 2013, especially after being targeted because of their theatre play Mi Minör, writer Meltem Arikan, director and lead actor Memet Ali Alabora and lead actress Pinar Ogun, the graphic designer and social media director Melin Edomwonyi left Turkey overnight, fearing their lives. Together they moved to Wales and soon after Ogun, Arikan and Alabora founded Be Aware Productions. Enough is Enough is the first live performance production of the company.
Meltem Arikan wrote ‘Enough is Enough’ as a result of her years of endless struggle against incest, child abuse and violence against women. In 2004, her fourth novel ‘Stop Hurting My Flesh’ was banned in Turkey for having incest as one of its subject matters. The ban was lifted after her legal struggle and Arikan was given freedom of speech and expression award by the Turkish Publishers Association. Arikan continued writing on the subject while actively fighting for change. In 2007, her first theatre play ‘I’m Breaking the Game’, which was about honour killings, abuse, rape and incest, premiered in Zurich Theatre Festival.
Soon after their arrival in the UK, Meltem Arikan, Pinar Ogun and Memet Ali Alabora started working on creative productions again. They had decided to reproduce ‘I’m Breaking the Game’ and applied to Arts Council of Wales for research and development grant. During this period, the creative team figured out what Arikan has been emphasising for years that “when it is about equality between women and men there is not much difference between the East and the West.” And so they had decided to make a new play from the stories of women in Britain who saw violence.
During the writing process of the play when Arikan came up with lyrics before anything else, Alabora decided that the music should not be a supporting element but the play should evolve around music and so ‘Enough is Enough’ was formed as a theatre-gig. This also did bring about the idea to generate a large tour. With their notorious play ‘Mi Minor’ they aimed to reach a non-theatregoer audience and they decided to the same with ‘Enough is Enough’.
Be Aware aims to create an experience for the audience with each of their productions, they organised a 26 day tour to perform in more than 20 different places in Wales. Even before the tour was initiated, it had already made a splash around artists who stated that such an extensive tour in such a short time had never been done in Wales before. The tour itself and the places to be visited were as important as the staging of the play. The tour was part of play’s overall design. The play wasn’t designed to be performed only in the theatre venues. Non-theatregoers were taken into consideration.
As much as its content, the play itself now has a story worth telling. Throughout the tour, the team had the chance to see mostly deprived and remote territories of Wales. In some areas, the team was shocked by the lack of interest in arts but on the contrary in other areas they observed the transformational power of it. In Newtown although the show was promoted a month in advance, the team drove the tour bus with speakers on top around the town like in the olden days, although they invited locals in the bar of the venue, no one from Newtown attended, except few audience members coming from neighbouring towns. In Merthyr Tydfil, Meltem Arıkan and Pınar Öğün facilitated workshops with girls and boys aged 12-13 who also came to see the play. After the play one of the girls asked Pinar to teach her how to become a feminist. It was like an answer to the everlasting question “why do we make theatre?”. One of the most remarkable memories was in Aberystwyth. The play was performed in a packed bar to an audience who came to see the play together with bar customers who stayed after a rugby game. You can read more about the experiences of the team during the Wales tour on our Zine.
Meltem Arikan, Writer
Meltem Arikan is a Turkish author and playwright who has dedicated her life to write against Patriarchal system and to fight for freedom of speech and expression. Arikan is known by her sharp critique of society and fearless and outspoken voice in all her novels, plays, poems and articles.
Memet Ali Alabora, Director
As well as a theatre director, Alabora is a recognised Turkish actor in theatre, TV and cinema. He was one of the founders of Garajistanbul, a contemporary performing arts institution in Istanbul. He is one of the founders of Actors’ Union of Turkey and served as the first president until 2014.
He is among the six theatre makers commissioned by Theater Freiburg for their large-scale multi-disciplinary project “Eurotopia” premiered in March 2017.
Maddie Jones, Musical Director / Performer
Jones is a singer, multi-instrumentalist, songwriter, and composer, originally from Ystrad Mynach, now based in Cardiff. She divides her time between writing, self-releasing and performing her own music, and recording and live work in several other outfits. She has released 3 EPs and one album to date, with another EP set to be released in 2017, working once more with renowned producer Charlie Francis. Maddie has developed a well-honed DIY approach to her craft, often backing her endeavours through crowdfunding, alongside gratefully received arts grants.
Holly Mallett is an actress, musician and writer. Theatre credits include Andy & The Odd Socks (UK & Festival tours), Notflix: The Improvised Musical (Underbelly Southbank, Kings Head & UK Tour), Elemental (Bush Theatre), In My Head (Brockley Jack), CBeebies Live! (UK Arena Tour), League Of St. George (Kings Head & Hope Theatre).
Holly runs London-Based theatre company Cuckoo Bang and her debut play "Choosers" was published by Play Dead Press in 2016.
Pınar Öğün, Performer
Born and raised in Turkey, Pinar Ogun, began her career as an actress in the feature film ‘Borrowed Bride’ directed by one of Turkey’s most renowned directors Atif Yilmaz, while she was training at Music and Performing Arts Faculty of Bilkent University in Ankara. In 2006, she moved to London to continue her acting training at LAMDA. She worked in theatre and films during her time in the UK. She went back to Turkey to star the real life story of a famous Turkish doctor, Turkan Saylan.
Francesca Dimech, Performer
Dimech was born and raised in Cardiff to an Italian / Maltese family. She has had a keen interest in music from an early age, writing her first song (and winning the school Eisteddfod aged 4). Francesca has been playing guitar, trumpet, accordion and singing with bands since the age of 12. Some of her current musical projects include The School (Elefant Records), Hail! The Planes (Shape Records), Quiet Marauder (Bubblewrap Records), Francesca's Word Salad, Wonderbrass and Inc.A
Light / Sound Engineer
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