2024 Criminal Queerness Festival Set for Perelman Performing Arts Center

Off-Broadway News

2024 Criminal Queerness Festival Set for Perelman Performing Arts Center

The sixth annual festival from National Queer Theater will feature three plays performed in repertory.

Karen Eilbacher and T Thompson in Nick Hadikwa Mwaluko’s Waafrika 123 at the 2019 Criminal Queerness Festival
Sean Velasco Dodge

National Queer Theater’s sixth annual Criminal Queerness Festival is set for June 21-29, 2024 at the Perelman Performing Arts Center (PAC NYC). The festival showcases plays by international LGBTQIA+ playwrights facing censorship and criminalization in their countries of origin. 

“I have been a fan of National Queer Theater’s impactful work through this festival for the past five years,” PAC NYC Artistic Director Bill Rauch said in a statement. “It is especially meaningful for us at PAC NYC to host the Criminal Queerness Festival, given our location at the World Trade Center and our mission to create connections across the world as well as across our city.”

The festival will feature three plays performed in repertory, the first of which is Raphaël Amahl Khouri’s She He Me. The work tells the true stories of three Arab characters who challenge gender norms, resulting in conflict against the state, society, family, and themselves. She He Me will be presented June 21-23, with Khouri directing.  

On June 22, 23, and 27, Achiro P. Olwoch’s The Survival will be showcased. Directed by Nadia Guevara, the play follows Achan, who must
confront her own traditional upbringing to find love and new notions of family in modern

Finally, Nick Hadikwa Mwaluko’s Waafrika 123: A Queerly Scripted Tragic Rise to African Fantasia will return to the festival after being developed at the 2019 installment. In the play’s fictional, rural village Luoland, a queer couple is confronted with a choice between separating for the good of their community or seeking change for their village. Waafrika 123 will be presented June 26, 28, and 29, with direction by é Boylan. 

Pay-what-you-wish tickets are available now at for members, and will be available to the general public March 5. 

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