About Swim Team
“Swim Team” had its English premier at SummerWorks Lab 2018 and received great reviews and feedback. We were deeply grateful to receive an Honourable Mention from Canadian Stage in Direction. Additionally, Swim Team was in NOW’s annual list of the “Best of the Fest” for Outstanding Production, Ensemble, Direction and Design.
“Swim Team” is a powerful metaphor for Iranian women’s lives in the restrictive patriarchal society of post-revolutionary Iran, inspired by real stories from the world of women’s sports. The story is about four Iranian women who meet in an apartment to learn how to swim—in a place that has no water. Can anyone teach people to swim without water? Roya thinks so. Roya is a swim coach and is qualified to teach the three young women.
“Swim Team” references modern Iranian society, where women’s rights are constantly being eroded and female athletes face countless obstacles. Following the 1979 revolution, sports in Iran became subject to gender segregation. Facilities and funds were in short supply for female athletes and laws that required women to wear hijabs greatly impacted their ability to compete against other high-performance athletes. As a result, many women’s sports teams were disbanded after the establishment of the Islamic Republic.
Photos by: Josef Hammond
Teaser by: Rojin Sahfiee
Poster by: Seoideh Razi