New York City
Jonathan Leaf’s The Caterers, inspired by the 1977 hostage crisis over the film Mohammed, Messenger of God, receives its world premiere from The Immediate Theater Company. Jose Zayas directs.
In 1977, a group of Islamic radicals brought the Nation’s capitol to a two-day stand still, storming several buildings and holding 120 people hostage. The act of terrorism was in response to Mohammed, Messenger of God, a film that the radical group, Hanafi, had deemed profanely offensive and sacrilegious. Twenty people were injured and a reporter was killed before hostage negotiators were finally able to end the siege. Not a single member of Hanafi had ever viewed the film.
In The Caterers playwright Jonathan Leaf re-imagines these events in the present day, telling the story of two caterers who become trapped in a screening room the night of the film’s premiere. Cornered by an Islamic radical, whose mission is to steal the blasphemous film, the couple, held hostage along with the film’s screenwriter, try to hold onto their lives and convince their captor that the film is not what it would seem. For a tense 80 minutes, the cat and mouse game ensues, as each of the four struggle to protect their art, their religion and their lives.
There is an added performances on Monday, October 17th at 8:00 PM (Pay What You Can Night) and there is no matinee performance on Saturday, October 29th.
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