‘Winter of 88’ is an award-winning meta-theatrical and autobiographical piece based on the playwright and director Mohammad Yaghoubi’s traumatic experiences of the Iran-Iraq war. It is rooted – as explained in the play- in the guilt of surviving while witnessing many others who didn’t. The playwright wrote this play because he felt that he owed it to the people who lost their lives. During an interview, Mohammad Yaghoubi explains: “the fear and insecurity I felt in the winter of 1988 has followed me all through my life. I felt powerless and vulnerable. We just waited for death to come and there was nothing we could do. People were killed everyday and to this day, I still carry the sense of shame for those fleeting moments of joy after hearing any missile attacks, which meant I was alive, knowing others were dead. I survived the Winter of 1988 so I had to write about it”.
First directed by the playwright in 1997, the play won for Outstanding Writing, Direction and Acting at the 16th International Theatre Festival of Iran.Widely recognized in Iran, Winter of 88 has been performed in Farsi by numerous Iranian Theatre groups.
The play portrays a war among the family members who are struggling with problems of their own, becoming victims to a bigger, more violent war simultaneously.
NOWADAYS THEATRE made its World English Premiere at the 2020 Next Stage Festival and received many amazing reviews and was given the rating of NNNNN by Now Magazine. “Winter of ’88” will be presented in Vancouver Fringe in September 2020. This performance gives us the chance to start a conversation about the people who hate war; those who are the victims of war but are known as soldiers, warriors, even terrorists. The truth is a nation is judged by the actions of its leaders which is wrong. The reality is that, people of a country fall victims to the wrong decisions of their leaders. ‘Winter of 88’ creates a window into the past, a window to the days when death was just around the corner, and even though many survived death, no one survived the trauma.