Outside the World

Photo by Geo Geller

Photo by Geo Geller


Outside the World
an immersive refugee show

Created by Monica Hunken

Director: Melissa Chambers
Developed with company
with collaboration and true stories from *newcomers

Original CAST:
Soraya Broukhim
Ano Equi
Monica Hunken
Thomas McGinn
Evan True
Fabian Zarta

BarnArts Collective Cast:

Soraya Broukhim
Ano Equi
Monica Hunken
Thomas McGinn
Evan True
Fabian Zarta

Erez Driguez

Michele Rafic

Herbie Go

Step inside the shoes of a refugee for only a moment. In this immersive performance, the audience will have a chance to experience what it's like to enter a camp in a foreign land, following true stories from the frontlines of the crisis.  
Borders are imaginary. Peek into the disorienting world of displacement.

Outside the World is an immersive performance where audience members enter a refugee camp in a foreign land, as active participants. The world of the show is modeled on the Katsikas Refugee Camp in Northern Greece where Monica Hunken worked as a volunteer. The story is based on the actual experiences of newcomers (the preferred term for refugee) whom Monica met at Katsikas, the port camps in Athens, in Kirchdorff, Austria  in 2016 and from before the crisis when she biked across Egypt, Jordan and Syria in 2010. Six individuals have given us permission for their names and stories to be used for this piece and are ongoing correspondents to our creative process.


In the performance, a mobile audience is guided through their first day at the camp by our cast who play volunteers, bureaucrats, the military and fellow newcomers. Each audience member is given the identity of one of our 5 real life informants. As the audience embarks through the world of the piece, they begin to see glimpses of a day in the life of that person, they find physical artifacts belonging to them, and are given lines to speak as if that story was their own. They also watch as conflict develops among volunteers and officials working at the camp (our cast), these stories develop the circumstances and drive the drama of our story. At the height of the performance a movement brews against the conditions in the camp. The audience are at times witnesses and at times direct participants in the mounting protest. At the close of the show, they will meet the actual people whose storylines they have enacted via video link.

This show is developing with the full consent and participation of individuals who have survived war, perilous journeys, torture and valiant escapes during the largest refugee crisis since World War II. As borders throughout the world are closing to those most in need, we have chosen this moment to respond with this show that not only places an audience at the centre of the conflict, but also, through narrative developed with the company, mounts a detailed study of the bureaucratic and organizational conflicts and cross agendas that govern these camps.

First produced by SANCTUARY Festival at HERE Arts Center February 16th, 2017
On a double bill with: What We Needed: Then & Now
Original Music by Kirya Traber

"SANCTUARY is a part of SubletSeries@HERE: a curated rental program, which provides artists with subsidized space and equipment, as well as technical support."

all photos by Geo Geller




Immigration Rights and Support Resources:

Black Alliance for Just Immigrationhttp://blackalliance.org/programs/baji-nyc/

The organizing committee of BAJI NYC is a group of powerful volunteers committed to the entire journey of abolition. The membership advocates for the fullness of the Black community. Members plan campaigns and events to advance a collective vision for transformation.


CAIR NY- http://www.cair-ny.org

For more than 20 years, the Council on American Islamic Relations has fought for the civil rights of American Muslims. The NY chapter is one of the busiest and most dynamic of CAIR’s thirty nationwide affiliates, defending, representing, and educating over one million Muslims in the NY area.


Center for Constitutional Rights - http://ccrjustice.org

Dedicated to advancing and protecting the rights guaranteed by the U.S. Constitution and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.


DRUM- http://www.drumnyc.org

South Asian Organizing Center (formerly Desis Rising Up and Moving) is a multigenerational, membership led organization of low-wage South Asian immigrant workers and youth in New York City.


Families for Freedom-   http://familiesforfreedom.org/about

FFF has evolved into an organizing center against deportation. We are source of support, education, and campaigns for directly affected families and communities -- locally and nationally.


ICE-Free NYChttp://icefreenyc.com   

The ICE-FREE NYC campaign is comprised of New Yorkers of all backgrounds who want Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) presence completely out of our city, which means an end to ICE collaboration with all NYC agencies.


Jewish Voice for Peace- https://jewishvoiceforpeace.org/network-against-islamophobia/

The Network Against Islamophobia (NAI), a project of Jewish Voice for Peace, was created to serve as a resource to, and work with, JVP chapters and other groups interested in organizing against Islamophobia and anti-Arab racism and to be a partner to the broader, Muslim-led movement against Islamophobia.


The Legal Aid Society, 24/7 hotline re ICE in NYC - 844-955-3425

A private, not-for-profit legal services organization, dedicated since 1876 to providing quality legal representation to low-income New Yorkers. It is dedicated to one simple but powerful belief: that no New Yorker should be denied access to justice because of poverty.


Make the Road- http://www.maketheroadny.org

Make the Road New York (MRNY) builds the power of Latino and working class communities to achieve dignity and justice through organizing, policy innovation, transformative education, and survival services.


Masa NYhttp://masany.org

Masa partners with Mexican and Latino children, youth, and families in the South Bronx to develop strong learners and leaders who fully participate in and contribute to the larger community. We envision a community that is civically engaged, empowered, and educated.



http://unitedwedream.org/thank-deportation-defense-card-handy-phone/ -info cards for dealing with ICE



New Sanctuary NYC  newsanctuarynyc.orgThe New Sanctuary Coalition of NYC is an interfaith network of congregations, organizations, and individuals, standing publicly in solidarity with families and communities resisting detention and deportation in order to stay together 


NY Immigration Coalition- www.thenyic.org Envisions a NY that is stronger because all people are welcome, treated fairly, and given the chance to pursue their dreams.


Ways to Get Involved in the Refugee Crisis:

Prakis: One of Greece’s largest humanitarian organizations dedicated to the care and support of vulnerable social groups, Praxis helps manage refugee assistance and shelter in multiple hotels across the country. They assist with transportation, meals, medical care, psychosocial support and language classes for refugees.


Rowing Together: Non-profit organization founded in Spain, currently providing gynecological assistance to female refugees in Greece.


Syrian American Medical Society:  A U.S. based non-profit, non-political, medical and humanitarian relief organization that is working on the front lines of crisis relief in Syria, as well as with Syrian refugees in Greece to alleviate suffering and save lives.


CARE International: provides shelter and psychosocial support to refugee women and mothers in Athens, Greece, as part of their wider effort to help Syrians displaced within Syria, and Syrian refugees. 


Norwegian Refugee Council:  Runs temporary refugee housing in hotels, as well as provides medical support, assistance, clothing, bedding, food items, medical items and baby items to refugees across Greece.


Doctors of the World/ Médecins du Monde: an international medical organization that provides primary and maternal healthcare in refugee camps and shelters across Greece.


International Rescue Committee: The IRC has been responding to the refugee crisis in Greece since July 2015 with a focus on environmental health, protection and emergency financial assistance. They are working to ensure that refugees have clean water, proper sanitation, psychosocial support, and emergency financial assistance. They also provide informal learning activities for children, women and girls to help them maximize their time in limbo.


Volunteerwith Lighthouse Relief:  http://www.lighthouserelief.org/volunteer/


Donate to Soup and Socks- https://soupandsocks.eu

The incredible group who led the kitchen at Katsikas camp and have set up a learning/ cultural center.


Donate to the White Helmets: The Syrian Civil Defense, also called the White Helmets because of their headwear, are on the ground helping Syrians in Aleppo.


Work for refugees when they can’t-  Double up your support by donating your time and money to refugees. Fear that refugees will take jobs, and lack of economic opportunities for refugees contributes to a difficult environment for refugees to generate income. Combine this with the lengthy time it takes to process work visas for refugees and it can be hard for refugees to feed their families. This is part of what inspired #WorkforRefugees. A project from World Vision New Zealand where students contributed a portion of their earnings to charities supporting refugees. You can do this too. Donate a small portion of your effort to show support for refugees and #WorkforRefugees to show your efforts.


Translate for a refugee- Lend your time in any way you can with the skills and tools you have. If you’re awesomely bilingual, especially in Arabic, you have a great opportunity to help. Donate your time by translating for refugees.  Being in a place where you don’t speak the language can be intimidating. Signing up to translate is a great way to help refugees understand their rights and surroundings in a new environment.


Help with legal support- Law students and practicing attorneys need to gain experience to master the law. One option to do this while helping refugees is by taking action.  Refugees need help navigating complex laws around immigration status too. A group of law students realized that both could benefit from working together and created an organization that pairs law students and professionals with refugees (15 percent are Syrian) in need of legal assistance.  Join the International Refugee Assistance Project.