Suehyla El-Attar

Suehyla El-Attar

Suehyla El-Attar is an award-winning. Atlanta-based actor/writer. She’s a first-generation Egyptian born in America; specifically Starkville, Mississippi. She’s spent time in Iraq, Kuwait, Israel, The West Bank, The Netherlands, and Egypt throughout her life... and, of course, The United States.

As a professional stage actress since 2004, El-Attar works mainly in Atlanta with numerous companies...
Suehyla El-Attar is an award-winning. Atlanta-based actor/writer. She’s a first-generation Egyptian born in America; specifically Starkville, Mississippi. She’s spent time in Iraq, Kuwait, Israel, The West Bank, The Netherlands, and Egypt throughout her life... and, of course, The United States.

As a professional stage actress since 2004, El-Attar works mainly in Atlanta with numerous companies: The Alliance Theatre, Horizon Theatre Company, Synchronicity Theatre, 7Stages, Dads Garage, Georgia Ensemble, Essential Theatre, PushPush Theater, and the late Theatre in the Square.

In 2005, The Women+War Project, funded by the NEA and produced by Synchronicity Theatre (then known as Synchronicity Performance Group), invited her as a collaborator. Delving into research, she and the group of artists (designers, actors, writers) interviewed over 40 women from all over the world, affected by war in some way: Spies, refugees, politicians, peace activists, war journalists, wives of soldiers, sisters of soldiers, daughters of soldiers, and soldiers themselves. The 18-month long collaboration ended with a world premiere and full-production of never before heard true stories. Suehyla trained in documentary-style interviewing tactics to gather the stories; and underwent numerous workshops with Celeste Miller, discovering and developing unique storytelling performances and narratives in which to reveal them.

Also, in 2005, Suehyla participated in a historic, first, female-led-co-ed Islamic Service held in the United States. Suehyla started the services as the muezzin, the person who calls the people to prayer, which were conducted by Dr. Amina Wadud.

2006 saw the world premiere of her first full-length play. After a 2-year workshop process, Horizon Theatre produced The Perfect Prayer, a semi-autobiographical story of a young Arab, Muslim girl coming of age in the American South. Since then, it has received productions across the United States.

For the next several years, while continuing to act on stage, El-Attar received several commissions for TYA audiences. Through Théâtre du Rêve, she wrote interactive, theatrical experiences for multi-age school groups visiting featured exhibits at The High Museum. Working on her dream to become the John Hughs of the stage, El-Attar was overjoyed when Shiloh High School in Snellville, GA commissioned and produced 2 of her young audience pieces.

By 2009, Suehyla’s acting career began to include TV and film. Still writing, she was invited into The Alliance Theatre Writer’s Lab and Working Title Playwrights, whom she still works with as a moderator and dramaturge.

2013 saw the second world premiere and full production of her commissioned piece, Third Country, a recipient of the MAP Fund. Third Country took on the true story of adaptation, focusing on Clarkston, GA and its struggles with one of the largest, most diverse refugee resettlement communities in the United States. 2014 welcomed her most personal piece, yet, The Doctor The Devil & My Dad, which enjoyed its world premiere at 7 Stages.

Suehyla worked with the YOUTH CREATES!, a 5-week intensive theatre program designed and managed by 7Stages. Youth, from ages 11 to 20, participate in an immersive program; they learn to build ensemble and collaborate, in all the facets of theatre (administrative and artistic), to create an original full-length production, after 5 weeks. As one of the teaching artists, El-Attar guided the writing program from 2007-2014

Suehyla is an Artistic Associate with Synchronicity Theatre. She has worked with the Horizon Theatre and the Alliance Theatre in their playwright residency programs for public schools in the Atlanta area since 2010. She is the recipient of the 2011 Mississippi Theatre Playwriting award; numerous Suzi Bass Award nominations and wins. Recently, she was named the 2014 Alliance Theatre Artist Lab Fellow, where she works closely with Artistic Director Susan Booth, Literary Manager Celise Kalke, Director of Education Programs Chris Moses and Casting Director Jody Feldman.

She is currently working her one woman show, NOPE, THAT'S JUST MY FIRST NAME, commissioned by Horizon Theatre and due to take the stage by 2020.

Suehyla lives, happily, in Decatur, GA with her guy and 3 cats.

Plays

  • THIRD COUNTRY
    Nura, a refugee, clings to her soccer ball like a lifeline as she meets Sasha, a resettlement worker who is her guide to a strange new home in a small Southern town. But the welcome is mixed in this community reeling from a flood of newcomers—all refugees from around the world. A community meeting divides the town, and a soccer field becomes the battleground for its future.Will longtime residents and these...
    Nura, a refugee, clings to her soccer ball like a lifeline as she meets Sasha, a resettlement worker who is her guide to a strange new home in a small Southern town. But the welcome is mixed in this community reeling from a flood of newcomers—all refugees from around the world. A community meeting divides the town, and a soccer field becomes the battleground for its future.Will longtime residents and these eager new Americans learn to work together to find peace?

    Inspired by real life events in nearby Clarkston, Georgia, playwright Suehyla El-Attar (Horizon’s The Perfect Prayer) uses her signature wit and optimism to look at a community in transition, and what happens when we must redefine and share our homes. A poignant new play from our own changing backyard.

  • The Doctor, The Devil, & My Dad
    One day, while living with her patient and Lucifer (the former arch angel) Summer wakes up and realizes everything is real.