Birmingham > Brick Lane > Bangladesh

Hexagon Theatre, mac Birmingham, Cannon Hill Park, B12 9QH

Emerging local writing talents share compelling narratives exploring their family lives and personal journeys.

Join us for an absorbing and thought-provoking afternoon as emerging local writing talents share compelling narratives exploring their family lives and personal journeys. Their new works were produced as part of a series of creative writing sessions delivered by Sampad in partnership with Rich Mix and Purbanat, under the banner “Birmingham>Brick Lane>Bangladesh”.

The sessions were devised to support and develop new, local writing talent, with a focus on uncovering female voices from Bangladeshi and Bengali communities in the region. Participants worked with established writer/actor Paven Virk to reveal their stories, while honing their expression through a variety of literary formats including scripts and poetry.

Work by five emerging writers will be presented, along with readings by radio presenter/storyteller, Jasvir Kang and presenter/actor Vimal Korpal.


Kindly supported by the William A. Cadbury Charitable Trust. Special thanks to Risna Begum, Hardish Virk, Paul Nicholl and Vimal Korpal.

Watch an interview with Diya Sen, one of the writers on the project, as she talks about her involvement and experience.

Watch an interview with Piali Ray, Director of Sampad, as she talks about her motivation for developing Birmingham > Brick Lane > Bangladesh.

About the writers

Tamanna Abdul-Karim

A proud mum of three, a teacher at heart, a keen traveller, amateur in the kitchen and a book-lover. Tamanna does full contact sport with nappies, is a serious sweet muncher and enjoys the theatrics of life!

Diya Sen

Diya lives in Birmingham with her husband and two boys. She is a tax consultant and her interests include arts, travelling and music.

Rushnara Mahamud

Now a primary school teacher, Rushnara also has wide experience in the voluntary sector often working to empower and support  women. She is a mother of two children.

Samiha Mahamud

Samiha is currently working towards her A Levels at Joseph Chamberlain college, studying English literature, philosophy, psychology and history with a view to reading Law at university. She enjoys reading, keeping up with current affairs and debating. She also enjoys keeping fit and listening to music.

About Paven Virk (workshop leader)

Paven is currently writing a feature film for Ecosse Films and is part of the writing team for Ayub Khan Din’s new series The ABC for Channel 4, produced by The Forge.  She founded Second Generation Theatre Company at the age of 16, exploring issues affecting her generation. After co-producing two plays with The Belgrade Theatre, she went on to take part in the Royal Court Young Writers Programme, the NFTS Screenwriting for Film & TV Course, Theatre Royal Stratford East Musical Theatre Writing Residency, the National Theatre Writers Attachment and Working Title Films’ residency at the Hay Festival. She was named one of Screen International’s “Stars of Tomorrow”.

About Jasvir Kang (workshop co-leader)

Jasvir spent the 1970s writing short stories and poems, reflecting her own experiences and the lives of South Asian women she knew. The stories spoke about the oppression and intolerances experienced by some of these women and the impact this was having on their family lives. Jasvir’s first book of short stories, Geji was published in 1989. A further three books were published in the 1990s.

About the partners

As leading national arts organisations each with a solid track record in addressing topical contemporary issues, both Sampad and Rich Mix invest in artistic activity that helps to propel wider social change. Birmingham>Brick Lane>Bangladesh is contributing to a movement that aims to positively overcome “Asian silence” in relation to women’s issues, while also amplifying the artistic output of associated communities.

Purbanat is an established theatre company based in West Midlands that acts as a creative home for new plays, performers and creative people. They discover, nurture and produce stories by people a wide range of backgrounds and present their work to the highest possible standards. | |

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