In development: Half Magic

Solo Performance - Creator/Performer

Half Magic is the autobiographical story of a biracial white/South Asian child raised on stories of white heroes. Joseph Ahmed uses physical theater, storytelling, and circus techniques to explore the childhood narratives and social structures that led him to self-identify as white for most of his young life. What place is left in his Bengali heritage after a lifetime of white protagonists?

In development: The Recognition of Anjali Batra

Full-Length Play - Playwright

(3M, 2F, 1M/F/NB)

Anjali and Nik land what seem like dream roles in an adaptation of the classic Indian play The Recognition of Shakuntala.  Turns out, the director is overbearing, a (magical?) deer keeps showing up to talk to Anjali, and a pregnancy forces the couple to reckon with their relationship to each other, their parents, and their cultural heritage. This reimagination of an Indian classic places clashes of familial duty and love in the modern-day South Asian diaspora while shining a light on the particular struggle of being a brown artist in a white, male-dominated world.

Developed and supported by the Philadelphia Asian Performing Artists Playwrights Project.

Read an excerpt - tap the arrows in the upper right to expand.

Selected Projects

 
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Barnes Jawn(t)

Co-Creator, Obvious Agency – 2018/19

 

A jaunt is defined as a fun, short trip. In Philadelphia, jawn is a catch-all word for anything—a thing, place, person, or event. We put the two together to create a distinctly Philly jawn—Barnes Jawn(t)s, a series of improvised jaunts through The Barnes Foundation collection guided by fascinating local personalities.

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OPERATION: Wawa Road Trip

Director, Tribe of Fools – 2019

 

After their father’s death, Lee and Joey road-trip from Dayton to Philadelphia to scatter his ashes in a meaningful place: the Wawa parking lot. Features Dungeons & Dragons, sibling rivalry, rest stops, tunnel wizards, soda cave wisdom, and a disgusting hoagie legacy that must be upheld.


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COMING HOME

Director, First Person Arts – 2019


Coming Home after incarceration is a new beginning, challenging, and even at times hilarious. Join us for an evening featuring a group of incredible males of color sharing true, personal stories about their experiences as returning citizens.


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Chaos Theory

Chaos Theory

Director, IKantKoan – 2019

What if you were at a TED talk about chaos theory that suddenly went wildly off the rails?

 

A super serious lecture about Chaos Theory explodes into a series of interactive games and experiments inspired by the science of chaos theory, Jurassic Park, and the ultimate chaos: middle school crushes.

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Go To Sleep

Co-Creator, Obvious Agency – 2017

Go To Sleep is a real-world walking simulator/adventure game about insomnia.

 

Players enter a replica bedroom and interact with objects, triggering story elements and music that are performed and mixed live.

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FLY EAGLES FLY!

Co-Director, Tribe of Fools – 2018

Gwen is a brand-new Eagles fan and her office is full of opinions.  Fly Eagles Fly asks: what is fandom, what is community, and how do we reconcile the darker parts of things we love?

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QvK

Actor, Philadelphia Artists' Collective – 2021

Four actors engage in a monologue battle, performing famous speeches from classical plays and competing to win the audience’s vote of supremacy. As the competition goes on, the fight becomes more heated and tactics become more desperate, with actors resorting to flattery, bribery, secret weapons, and actual weapons. 


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Fishtown: A Hipster Noir

Co-Creator / Performer, Tribe of Fools – 2017

A luddite private eye stumbles onto a virtual reality conspiracy when a new app allows you to live out your wildest fantasies... at a cost. Fishtown explores our addiction to technology, our loneliness in an over-connected world, and asks what constitutes reality. 

 


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Fronteras: A Door in the Desert

Creator & Performer, Almanac Dance Circus Theatre

An acrobatic journey through transcendence and back, one that questions why we divide and label ourselves.

What does it take to tear down our own walls?


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Antihero

Performer, Tribe of Fools – 2018

Comic book nerds turn vigilante against the Philadelphia Parking Authority.

 

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Fronteras: An Homage to Whatshername

Creator & Performer, Almanac Dance Circus Theatre

A devised work of spellbinding movement, a sense of humor, and stunning acrobatics, that unpacks the biases associated with female-identifying people in positions of power.

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