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About the event

There is a Portal
Directed by Rania Lee Khalil
Written & Performed by Kayhan Irani
Video Art by Gazelle Samizay

This event is free and open to the public, but seating is limited and on a first-come, first-served basis.

There is a Portal is Kayhan Irani’s latest multimedia performance project which uses storytelling, humor and participatory theater to create spaces for healing and authentic dialogue. Sharing memories of the Iranian revolution and family tales of migration she offers a glimpse into personal and political cycles of displacement, violence, and finding home. She also invites the audience to tell their own stories, both during the performance and in structured post-show storytelling. Audience members weave a web of interconnected stories and histories to unearth the power and resilience of our human ties and claim a space of belonging. There is a Portal is a vehicle for authentic connection and community building. Free and open to the public, but to attend, please click here to RSVP.

Click here or below to watch the short trailer for the one-woman show.


Storyteller, performer, cultural activist, and grassroots educator Kayhan Irani creates socially engaged art that uses the tools of participatory theater and popular education for critical analysis, healing and community building.  Irani is a 2016 Obama White House Champion of Change, recognized for her art and storytelling work. Irani is also an Emmy Award winning writer.  She won a New York Emmy award for writing We Are New York a 9-episode broadcast TV drama used as a civic engagement tool for immigrant New Yorkers. Her previous one-woman show, We've Come Undone toured nationally and internationally, telling stories of Arab, South Asian and Muslim-American women in the wake of 9/11. She has trained hundreds of groups in Theater of the Oppressed and participatory storytelling tools over the years, both nationally and overseas, in Afghanistan, India, and Iraq. Her newest one-woman show, There is a Portal is a continuation of Irani’s artistic work which centers immigrant stories to advance an inclusive American narrative and activate audiences.

Co-sponsored by the Africana Studies Group, and by the Middle East and Middle Eastern American Center (MEMEAC) at the Graduate Center, CUNY.

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