Many plays have attempted to recreate realistic conditions and represent to the audience real-life situations. This is one of the reasons why many of them are called kitchen sink dramas because they failed to deliver that. But, that’s not the case with Oh my sweet land. This play also has a sink, but also all kitchen appliances, the stove, refrigerator, a big knife and a chopping board.
The play stage is located in Carroll Gardens, Brooklyn. It is cleaned, organized and stashed with lemons and cooking oil. The play starts with the music which is playing on the radio and the leading actress Nadine Malouf cleaning the kitchen. As she puts the meat in the fridge, she says one sentence which has a reflective meaning on the entire Syrian nation. She tells a story about a civil war that has been raging in Syria for years.
While she cuts the onion, which causes her to cry all the time, she wants to make the audience feel her pain and struggle Syrian people are facing every single day. The director got an idea for the play several years ago when he visited Syrian refugee camp in Jordan. He used the experience he got there, and since Arabic people are famous for hospitality, the included cooking as well. The Nadine’s character shares the memory with the audience when she is holding a plate with food and invites passers-by to come to eat or have coffee.
The director said he didn’t want to create a horror show for the audience, because, after all, he wanted them to have fun while watching. But still, he wanted to build real-life situation, so people could see the battles Syrian people are leading every day. Zuabi also mentioned that entire war is an attack on the culture, it is not just a political situation, it is an attack on the way of life. The loss of normality and the loss if an ability to express yourself, have brought a severe sorrow to the Syrian people and the director wants to provide them that, through this play.