You need Flash player 8+ and JavaScript enabled to view this video.
© Christophe Raynaud de Lage

كما روتها أمي – Told By My Mother

Ali Chahrour

Drawing on song, music, and dance, Lebanon’s Ali Chahrour extolls the power of maternal love in this poignant account of stories lived through by his family.


Perhaps the strongest voice in Lebanon’s contemporary performing arts, choreographer Ali Chahrour draws on song, music, and dance to exorcise sorrow and extoll the power of maternal love in two stories lived through by his family. His relative Leila managed to save her son Abbas from a martyr’s fate; his aunt, the late Fatmeh, lost her son in Syria. In the flowing, gyrating movements of Chahrour’s choreography, Leila and Abbas embody both of these poignant stories with utter sincerity, easing the vertigo of loss. Stark gestures lead to moments of stillness when the silence of frozen time vibrates with the intensity of the performers’ gazes.

After May He Rise and Smell the Fragrance (FTA, 2019), Ali Chahrour and his remarkable team of musicians and performers are back with Told by my mother, a work of memory rooted in reality that soothes sorrow and nourishes hope. Love and death go hand in hand, touching our hearts.


Produced by Ali Chahrour
Directed and choreographed by Ali Chahrour
Performed by Abbas Al Mawla + Ali Chahrour + Leila Chahrour + Ali Hout + Abed Kobeissy + Hala Omran
Music Two or The Dragon: Ali Hout + Abed Kobeissy
Assistant to the Director and Choreographer Chadi Aoun
Production Directors Chadi Aoun + Christel Salem
Set Design Ali Chahrour + Guillaume Tesson
Lighting Design and Technical Director Guillaume Tesson
Sound Design Benoit Rave

Co-produced by Théâtre Zoukak Theater + Arab Fund for Arts and Culture (AFAC) + Arab Arts Focus (Beirut) with the support of Studio Emad Eddin & Ford Foundation (Cairo) + Campania Teatro Festival (Naples) + Fondation Saadallah et Loubna Khalil (Beirut) + Kunstfest Weimar + Zürcher Theater Spektakel + Chaire Mahmoud Darwich (Brussels)
With the support of The French Institute of Beirut + Barzakh + Beit el Laffe+ KED + Mezyan + T-Marbouta + Tawlet + Eid Press (Beirut)

Presented in association with Monument-National

Premiered at Théâtre Al Madina (Beyrouth), on May 6, 2021

Written by Fabienne Cabado
Translated by David Dalgleish


© Lea Skayem

Ali Chahrour (Beirut)

Born in Beirut, Ali Chahrour studied theatre because no dance programs existed. He later learned Western dance conventions, but quickly left these behind. Instead, his reference points and sources of inspiration are the people and culture of his own country, whose forgotten stories he tells.

Full biography