Calling for peace and free speech, American Arab/Muslim and Jewish comedians will share their Charlie Hebdo comedy in Hollywood on February 12, 2014 when they perform in a special edition of the Sultans of Satire: Middle East Comic Relief, the national comedy-satire show launched 10 years ago by the Levantine Cultural Center in Los Angeles.
Headlined by Egyptian-American Ahmed Ahmed, of Comedy Central's Axis of Evil Comedy Tour and TBS' "Sullivan and Son," the tribute takes place at the Harmony Gold Theatre in Hollywood, 7655 Sunset Blvd., Los Angeles CA 90046, and is cosponsored by the international organization, Muslims for Progressive Values, NGO at the United Nations.
WHAT: Je Suis Charlie/Ahmed/Yoav, Comedy/Satire Tribute to Charlie Hebdo/Hyper Cacher Victims
WHEN: Thursday, February 12, 2015, 8 pm
WHERE: 7655 W. Sunset Blvd., Los Angeles CA 90046
DETAILS: Contact the Levantine Cultural Center, 323.413.2001
Entitled Je Suis Charlie/Je SuisAhmed/Je Suis Yoav, the satire special is a tribute to the victims of terrorism who perished in Paris on January 7 and 9, 2014. "Je Suis Charlie" has become a world-wide rallying cry of solidarity with the satirists and journalists who were killed at the offices of the French weekly paper, Charlie Hebdo. "Je Suis Ahmed" is a reference to the French policeman, Ahmed Merabet, a Muslim of Algerian heritage, who was killed outside the Charlie Hebdo offices last week. And "Je Suis Yoav" is in honor of the young Yoav Hattab, a Jewish citizen of Tunisia, who was killed by a terrorist claiming solidarity with the Charlie Hebdo shooters. Yoav died at the Hyper Cacher kosher supermarket in Paris, along with four other gunshot victims.
Headlined by Ahmed Ahmed, the show features Noel Elgrably, Sammy Obeid, Mona Shaikh, Tehran and special surprise guest comedians.
Je Suis Charlie/Ahmed/Yoav is produced by Jordan Elgrably, founder of the Levantine Cultural Center in 2001 and creator of the Sultans of Satire: Middle East Comic Relief, the stand-up comedy show featuring Arab/Muslim, Jewish and Christian comedians from the Middle East since 2005. The Levantine Cultural Center has served the greater Los Angeles area for over 13 years by presenting arts and education programs on the Middle East and North Africa. Welcoming people of all nations and religions, the Center fosters friendship and open dialogue, fights ignorance and intolerance, and forges a stronger, more diverse American society through programs and services that that bridge political, cultural and religious divides.
For tickets and information, contact 323.413.2001 or go online, levantinecenter.org.
Says comedian Sammy Obeid, an American of Lebanese/Palestinian heritage, "I've been doing comedy for 8 years, and I've seen my own jokes make people angry, but nothing like this. No one deserves to be killed over a joke."
Tehran Von Ghasri, an Iranian African American comedian whose goes by the simple stage name of Tehran, says, "Free speech is a fundamental right of all people. The attacks in France and deaths of innocents must not be in vain. Now is not the time to silence our voices, now is the time we must speak up for those whose voices have been silenced."
Says Mona Shaikh, the American comedian of Pakistani Muslim heritage who runs the MuslimsDoItBetter.com satirical web site (and who has herself received death threats), "Terrorists must understand that they cannot outnumber the peace lovers. It's time for fearlessness, not cowardice."
And Noel Elgrably, an American of Moroccan-Israeli Jewish heritage who performs regularly at The Comedy Store and has appeared in the Axis of Evil Comedy Tour, says "Peace."