Omer Abbas Salem

Omer Abbas Salem

Omer Abbas Salem is a Chicago actor and playwright. As an actor, he's worked with The New Coordinates, Jackalope Theatre, Steep Theatre, Silk Road Rising, Griffin Theatre, The House, Bailiwick Chicago, Actors Theatre of Louisville, and The Atlantic Theater. His play Mosque4Mosque was developed through the National Queer Theater and then chosen for further development through Steppenwolf Theatre's...
Omer Abbas Salem is a Chicago actor and playwright. As an actor, he's worked with The New Coordinates, Jackalope Theatre, Steep Theatre, Silk Road Rising, Griffin Theatre, The House, Bailiwick Chicago, Actors Theatre of Louisville, and The Atlantic Theater. His play Mosque4Mosque was developed through the National Queer Theater and then chosen for further development through Steppenwolf Theatre's SCOUT Program. The Secretaries was workshopped through The New Coordinates, a semi-finalist in Definition Theatre's Amplify Commission, and developed through the Goodman Theatre's Future Labs. It will receive it’s world premiere in 2022 with First Floor Theatre. Pretty Shahid was commissioned as part of Jackalope Theatre's 2020/21 New Frontier Series and Love in the Time of Jonestown was produced as a radio play by The New Coordinates. He is a member of the 2021/22 Goodman Playwrights Unit and is the recipient of the 2021 Cunningham Commission through DePaul University. He was an apprentice of the Actors Theatre of Louisville (17/18) and a proud ensemble member with Steep Theatre, First Floor Theater, and The New Coordinates. He is represented by DDO Artist Agency and the Gersh Agency. More at www.omerabbassalem.com.

Plays

  • Mosque4Mosque
    Ibrahim is the average 30something Arab American Muslim who is constantly being reminded how unmarried he is by his relentlessly caring immigrant mother, Sara. Having helped raise his smart, popular, hijabi cheerleading younger sister Lena, Ibrahim has always been comfortable sinking into the background. Normal job, quiet life, easy men. But on the precipice of finding what could be his first real relationship...
    Ibrahim is the average 30something Arab American Muslim who is constantly being reminded how unmarried he is by his relentlessly caring immigrant mother, Sara. Having helped raise his smart, popular, hijabi cheerleading younger sister Lena, Ibrahim has always been comfortable sinking into the background. Normal job, quiet life, easy men. But on the precipice of finding what could be his first real relationship, Sara feels compelled to take Ibrahim's future into her own hands by attempting to arrange her son's Big Gay Muslim Wedding all on her own.

    Mosque4Mosque is a dramedy about a normal Muslim American family attempting to live in America immediately prior to and immediately after Trump's inauguration.
  • The Secretaries
    Hannah recounts her life as one of Hitler's secretaries taken with him into the bunker at the end of WWII. Her sons are dead and she's sad. She uses her sadness as an excuse to search for greater importance and find it in her capacity for evil. This absurd comedy looks at complicity and the lies we tell ourselves to act in self-interest and create self-importance.
  • Modern Women
    Enter Dhruvy's beauty salon, nestled in a quiet Skokie strip mall, to hear three generations of Arab and Indian friends negotiate this brave new world. Omer Abbas Salem’s new play is a re-imagined American classic, spoken by immigrants and recolored by our love and supremely big feelings. Would you like mehndi, threading, or a blowout?
  • Pretty Shahid
    The Kazem family immigrated to the Chicago from Iraq and are attempting to assimilate and live and then 9/11 happens. This romantic comedy uses classic film tropes to examine identity and which knots we choose to untie to become our ideal American. This is a play about self discovery.
  • Love in the Time of Jonestown: A Radio Play
    A queerer reimagining of the origins of Jonestown and the People's Temple. This play is told in three episodes and follows Rassoul, a Turkish American swept up by the church and Jim Jones' seduction. As we descend into the jungle, things get more absurd until everything stops.
  • The Sisterhood or Sorority of Scientific Sisterly Science
    A group of scientists have formed a new community without gender or social hierarchy for the greatest experiment: to see how much humans can learn and discover when unencumbered by inequity. Their great experiment is threatened when two green children who speak a fairy language appear. Who are they and where did they come from and will they mean the sisterhood's end?
  • *~*ElAgAb FaB*~*
    Elagabalus is a FABULOUS gender fluid, queer, and Syrian Roman Emperor. Watch him struggle to explain his way into heaven. The more he speaks, the deeper the hole he digs. Based on history, Elagab is an absurdist reaction piece to Trump's election and was created at the Actors Theatre of Louisville.
  • An Incubator
    An Utah Senator is pregnant and visits a reproductive specialist for an exam and so begins a tumultuous relationship. He is the worlds' first pregnant man and she hates having to help him. This is a play about appropriation and when we're forced to tolerate it. This is a play about privilege and when we tolerate it. It's a Science Fiction fifteen minute play.