I Shall Not Hate to be Presented at Grinnell College

February 05, 2018

Feb. 9–11, 2018

The renowned play I Shall Not Hate will be presented in live performances at Grinnell College from Feb. 10-11. 

Adapted from the biography of Nobel Peace Prize-nominated doctor Izzeldin Abuelaish, the play follows a Gaza obstetrician who refuses to relinquish his commitment to Israeli-Palestinian reconciliation despite being challenged by prejudices on both sides. The production is part of Voices from a Changing Middle East Festival: The War Comes Home. 

I Shall Not Hate has captivated audiences in Washington, D.C. The Washington Post called it "one of the most effective one-person bio-plays … ever experienced. Staged by Pitovsky with an unadulterated, intuitive grasp of the blunt-force impact of Abuelaish's memories, and performed by Abbas with an understated dignity, the 75-minute piece is one of those eloquent pleas for understanding that speaks louder than 100 manifestos."

The festival will also present the filmed version of the celebrated one-person, multi-voice stage presentation, Wrestling Jerusalem, by Aaron Davidman.

The film Wrestling Jerusalem will be shown at 7:30 p.m. Friday, Feb. 9, in Joe Rosenfield '25 Center, Room 101. The play will be performed live at 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 10, and at 2 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 11. The live performances will take place in Bucksbaum Center for the Arts, Roberts Theatre.

Both the film showing and performances of I Shall Not Hate will be immediately followed by talk-backs with the audience, involving the performers and production staff.

Gassan Abbas, a leading Palestinian actor in Israel, will perform the show in Hebrew and Arabic. English subtitles are integrated into the play. Abbas brings humanity and heroism to the role of Abuelaish in a script adapted and staged by one of the festival's featured young artists, Israeli director Shay Pitovsky. 


Although the film and play are free, tickets are required for both showings of the play.

Tickets will be available starting Wednesday, Feb. 7, from the box office in the Bucksbaum Center for the Arts during open hours from noon to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday.

Phone reservations are not accepted, but those interested may call the box office at 641-269-4444 during open hours to determine whether tickets are still available.

A limited number of tickets are also available beginning at noon on Feb. 7 at the Pioneer Bookshop, 933 Main St., Grinnell. 

The College's Public Events Office, Chalutzim, and the Center for the Humanities are sponsoring the film and live performances.