Noura

by HEATHER RAFFO
directed by TAIBI MAGAR
McGuire Proscenium Stage

A story of identity and belonging

It’s Christmas Eve in New York City, and Noura — a newly minted U.S. citizen — is preparing to host an Iraqi meal and growing more homesick by the minute. Her husband and son have fully embraced their American names and identities, but Noura feels restless and displaced. Even so, she eagerly welcomes her dinner guests until secrets are revealed and the evening begins to unravel. Inspired by Henrik Ibsen’s A Doll’s House, this brilliant new play is a poignant exploration of motherhood, marriage and identity in modern America.

Three things to know

  • Playwright Heather Raffo, whose mother is American and father is Iraqi, often draws on her personal background in her work.
  • The Guthrie produced Raffo’s 9 Parts of Desire in the Dowling Studio during the 2007–2008 Season. Director Taibi Magar directed Danai Gurira’s Familiar during the 2017–2018 Season.
  • Noura developed out of a series of workshops that Raffo led with Arab American college students responding to Henrik Ibsen’s A Doll’s House.

Ticket prices

Prices range from $25 to $79.

Pro tip: Preview performances start at $15 (January 11–16). Hurry, these go quickly! 

Detailed pricing

Run time

Approximately 1 hour, 30 minutes (no intermission)

Content advisory 

This production contains mature language and the use of electronic cigarettes.

Venue info

Noura will take place on the McGuire Proscenium Stage.

Pro tip: Can't do stairs or have a special seating request? Call the Box Office for details. 

Accessibility

ASL-interpreted, audio-described and open-captioned performances are available on select dates.

Learn More about Accessibility

Play guide 

Want to dig a little deeper? Download the play guide to learn more about Iraqi culture, read an interview with the playwright and more.

In the news

Review

"Raffo’s 90-minute play takes off on Ibsen’s iconic central character in “A Doll’s House.” But unlike Ibsen’s Nora, a proto-feminist who famously walked out on her family to make a life of her own, Raffo’s Noura has a bigger departure — her homeland."

Read the full Star Tribune review. 

Review

“Heather Raffo is not only making a statement, she is starting the conversation. And she’s inviting (and perhaps even expecting) you to be a part of it.”

Read the full Mpls.St.Paul Magazine review. 

Video

Feature

In this behind-the-scenes video, director Taibi Magar reveals how Matt Saunders’ scenic design helps tell the story.  

Feature

Go inside the minds of the Noura cast and discover what they’ve been reflecting on in the rehearsal room.

Trailer

How does one balance individual pursuits with a search for community? Noura sits at the intersection of these universal questions.

Photos

Gamze Ceylan and Layan Elwazani in Noura. Photo by Dan Norman. 

Fajer Kaisi and Gamze Ceylan in Noura. Photo by Dan Norman. 

Kal Naga, Aarya Batchu and Fajer Kaisi in Noura. Photo by Dan Norman. 

Gamze Ceylan and Akshay Krishna in Noura. Photo by Dan Norman. 

Gamze Ceylan, Kal Naga, Layan Elwazani, Aarya Batchu and Fajer Kaisi in Noura. Photo by Dan Norman. 

Artists

Cast

Gamze Ceylan

Noura

Layan Elwazani

Maryam

Fajer Kaisi

Tareq

Kal Naga

Rafa'a

View More

Creative

Heather Raffo

Playwright

Taibi Magar

Director

Matt Saunders

Scenic Designer

Dina El-Aziz

Costume Designer

Reza Behjat

Lighting Designer

Sinan Refik Zafar

Sound Designer/Composer

Carla Steen

Resident Dramaturg

Keely Wolter

Voice and Dialect Coach

Katie Hawkinson

Stage Manager

Olivia Louise Tree Plath

Assistant Stage Manager

Placeholder for Shaymaa Hasan

Shaymaa Hasan

Quilt Artist

Jennifer Liestman

Resident Casting Director

Aaron Preusse

Resident Fight Director

View More

Celebrating Arab Artistry 

This winter, the Guthrie is proud to celebrate Arab artistry with our production of Noura, a series of presentations in the Dowling Studio and an In Conversation event with Arab theatermakers. “In curating the 2019–2020 Season, we didn’t want a singular story to bear the weight of trying to represent an entire cultural worldview, so we took the opportunity to present multiple tales from the Arab experience — all beautifully human, diverse and connected.” – Joseph Haj, artistic director

Read the full Star Tribune article. 

Sponsored by

Explore more

Virtual classes

Browse our selection of adult and youth classes

Learn more about Virtual classes

Go Behind the Scenes

Get to know the talented artists who bring our productions to life

Explore more about Go Behind the Scenes

Donate now

Give a tax-deductible gift to the Guthrie

Learn more about Donate now
Call