World Premiere: 16 September 2010, Curve Theatre, Leicester
Last performance: 11 December 2012, La Piscine, Chatenay-Malabry
In Vertical Road, Akram assembled a cast of very special performers from across Asia, Europe and the Middle East. With a specially commissioned score by long-term collaborator composer, Nitin Sawhney, the piece draws inspiration from the Sufi tradition and the Persian poet and philosopher Rumi. Exploring man’s earthly nature, his rituals and the consequences of human actions, Vertical Road becomes a meditation on the journey from gravity to grace.
‘I died from minerality and became vegetable;
And from vegetativeness, I died and became animal.
I died from animality and became man.
Then why fear disappearance through death?
Next time I shall die
Bringing forth wings and feathers like angels;
After that, soaring higher than angels –
What you cannot imagine,
I shall be that.’ (Rumi)