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A World Premiere, Limited-Run Production

Separated from her bābā in Iran and living in a strange new land, a determined young girl contacts the President, Santa Claus, and God to determine the unknown variable – when her father will be granted a Visa from the United States so they can be reunited.

This new play by Nahal Navidar explores the fractured nature of time and memory through the lens of familial separation. Since Trump’s mass division of migrant children from their parents, approximately 1,000 children remain separated. Written from lived experience, the playwright offers a window into the future and the lifelong trauma the parent and child experience when they are stripped of their most instinctive human need.

Friday, March 29th @7pm
Saturday, March 30th @2pm and 7pm

The Jarvis Square Theater



Nahal Navidar


Joan Nahid
Performer, Ávā


Adam El-Sharkawi
Performer, Bābā


Antonio L.  Rodriguez
Performer, Chorus

Jacob C. Shuler
Dramaturg, Director

Erik Jonathan Shuler
Stage Manager

Allyson Leisure
Costume Designer

Kousha Navidar
Sound Designer

Wanees Zarour

In 2020, we closed the door on our co-production of Nahal Navidar’s “My Dear Hussein.” We also paused our New Play Expedition, with Nahal’s “Iran Melancholia” mid-commission.


A lot has happened since then. COVID cases ebbed, and flowed, and ebbed, and continue to flow. The writer’s strike challenged the value of human creativity. Crises in Ukraine and Gaza challenge the value of human life itself. Biden resumed construction of the wall at the U.S. Mexico-border and continues implementing harsh policies for migrants and asylum seekers. In 2021, Nahal and her husband welcomed a beautiful baby boy. In 2022, Nahal unexpectedly lost her father.


So many doors close that can’t be opened again. But after four long years, we’re humbled and excited to be opening ours again with Nahal. On March 29th and 30th, we invite you to join us for a world premiere limited-run production of “The Unknown Variable.”

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