By Samah Sabawi. Directed by Bagryana Popov.

In a city at war, five young people count down the days before a boat sets sail for a safer place. Who will leave, who will stay, and what will their choices cost them?

Wednesday 7 September | 7.30PM | GPAC Theatre

“Perhaps the most important piece of theatre you will see this year.” 5 STARS, The Music

From multiple-award winning playwright Samah Sabawi comes THEM — a compelling tale of survival, friendship, and the things we are willing to do to protect the ones we love.

THEM tells the story of one young family as they face the decision whether to flee their war-torn city. Omar, Leila and their young child are counting down the days. Their friends enjoy fantasies of escape and the arrival of Omar’s sister brings a real chance to get out – but at what cost?

Developed in consultation with people living in conflict zones and displaced by war, the play was first supported by Melbourne Theatre Company’s Cybec Electric program before enjoying a sell-out extended season at the famed La Mama Theatre.

With unexpected tenderness, laughter, and song, THEM takes audiences into extraordinary circumstances to reveal our shared humanity in the ordinary moments that shape our lives.

“A drama dappled with humanity and humour amid the horrors of war [...] The inextinguishable spirit of laughter, of the music of life in the face of desolation, is crucial to both the play’s poignancy and appeal.” 4 STARS, Sydney Morning Herald.

Written by Samah Sabawi
Directed by Bagryana Popov
Producer, Set and Costume Design Lara Week
Lighting Design Shane Grant
Sound Design Elissa Goodrich
Prop Maker Lara Chamas
Production and Stage Manager Hayley Fox Touring
Production Manager Shane Grant
Cast Taj Aldeeb, Claudia Greenstone, Abdulrahman Hammoud, Sahil Saluja, Meena Shamaly, Mehran Tajbakhsh

Originally produced by Lara Week and Samah Sabawi, in collaboration with La Mama Theatre. THEM is supported by La Trobe University, the Victorian Government through Creative Victoria, the Restart Investment to Sustain and Expand (RISE) Fund – an Australian Government initiative, and the Australia Council for the Arts, the arts funding and advisory body of the Australian Government

Wed 7 September 7.30PM

GPAC Theatre

Full Price $40
Access Price $25
Schools Price $10

Additional Information

Duration: 80 minutes, no interval.


Content warning: This production contains themes of war which may effect those with experience of conflict. References to sexual violence during war—acknowledged but not graphically described. Sounds of bombs and explosions. Imitation firearms.

Suitable for ages 14+. 


For school bookings contact

Gippsland Performing Arts Centre has a flexible COVID refund policy.

Find Out More

Presented by