2020 - Shortlisted


Judges' comments

Omar and Leila are a young couple with a new baby in a war-torn country. Once middle class but now living day to day under the threat of falling bombs, they face a decision about whether to leave or stay. That question of life or death is the engine driving this play. Cleverly, Sabawi chooses to focus on the everyday needs and desires of the characters, inviting us to see them  as not ‘Them’ but ‘Us’.

With grace and humour, and through engaging characters, Sabawi asks the audience to consider the plight of those whose fate is so tied to the contemporary politics of Australia. In doing so, Sabawi intentionally makes more complex the picture we might paint of people in a situation seemingly so remote from that of most Australians. Sabawi has crafted a powerful and often heart wrenching play which remains in hearts and minds long after it has reached its conclusion.