‘Rumi: The Musical’ cast will feature West End and Broadway star Ramin Karimloo
Dana’s second musical follows the world acclaimed ‘Broken Wings’, which premiered in the West End before touring the Middle East
Dana Al Fardan, one of the Middle East’s leading contemporary composers, is pleased to announce her second major stage musical ‘Rumi: The Musical’, along with writing partner and West End star Nadim Naaman, and featuring West End and Broadway star Ramin Karimloo.
‘Rumi’, based on a story about the 13th century philosopher and poet Rumi by Evren Sharma, follows Dana and Nadim’s 2018 musical debut, ‘Broken Wings’ which premiered in the West End to sell out shows at the Theatre Royal Haymarket before touring the Middle East.
Dana Al Fardan said: “Composing for ‘Rumi’ has been the ultimate journey in unraveling components that are socially constructed from those that form our own personal truth and consciousness. In light of our shared experience this year, with the world falling into disarray, it has been an incredibly powerful and uplifting experience to retreat to that place and discover the abundant creative force that it offers. I am confident that we have created a framework that will offer the audience the chance to tap into that place on some level.”
‘Rumi: The Musical will launch first with a full-length concept album, with Ramin Karimloo and Nadim Naaman heading a West End cast comprising entirely of performers of Middle Eastern, North African and South Asian heritage, as well as featuring The Qatar Philharmonic Orchestra.
‘Rumi: The Musical’ will feature Ramin Karimloo, an actor, singer and composer recognised mainly for his work for London's West End longest running musicals including The Phantom of the Opera where he played the role of Phantom. He also played leading roles in Les Misérables, in addition to a number of other acclaimed musicals.
The musical is orchestrated and arranged by Joe Davison, with vocal arrangements by Nikki Davison and Middle Eastern musical supervision by Maias Alyamani. The album is produced, edited, and mixed by Joe and Nikki Davison for Auburn Jam Music.
‘Rumi: The Musical’ was recorded in London and Doha throughout the Covid-19 pandemic. It features a grand score which combines Middle Eastern authenticity with classical influences and contemporary musical theatre, with lyrics derived from Rumi’s poetry.
‘Rumi: The Musical’ will be released on all major digital platforms later this Spring, with further details to be announced soon.
Nadim Naaman said: “Nearly three years after writing the first song, we are excited to share ‘Rumi’ with the world. The journey has not been what we anticipated, but I am most proud that we have created and recorded this piece in spite of the adversity of Covid 19, working remotely across continents. The show’s integral themes of personal discovery, reflection and the pursuit of fulfilment have been lived and breathed worldwide due to the pandemic, and the messaging of this piece is perhaps even enhanced as a result. We thank our entire team and magnificent cast for their support, patience and enthusiasm along the way.”
Ramin Karimloo (as Shams Tabrizi) and Nadim Naaman (Rumi) lead the concept album cast as the central protagonists.
They are joined by Casey Al-Shaqsy (as Kimya), Soophia Foroughi (Kara), Sharif Afifi (Sultan Valed), Ahmed Hamad (Aladdin), Irvine Iqbal (Husam) and Alim Jayda (Sayyed).
Completing the company are Roshani Abbey, Amira Al Shanti, Eva-Theresa Chokarian, Maëva Feitelson, Sasha Ghoshal, James Hameed, Blythe Jandoo and Aliza Vakil.
The legacy of Rumi has touched millions around the world and continues to make an impact in its universality and utilitarian nature; a legacy which has lasted eight centuries and has inspired all nationalities, ages, faiths, and backgrounds. But how did it all begin?
‘Rumi: The Musical’ explores the transformative and powerful relationship between Rumi and his mentor Shams Tabrizi. From their first encounter, Rumi and Shams were destined to converge for greatness; two highly contrasting but brilliant minds, both seeking a higher purpose. However, the impact of this extraordinary friendship on Rumi’s loyal wife, Kara, her daughter Kimya and his sons, Sultan Valed and Aladdin is clear, inviting resistance from Rumi’s faithful following with increasingly intense and dramatic consequences. What was the price, that the world might receive the gift of Rumi’s genius and spiritual legacy?