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Silk Road Rising

Rating: 4.97 stars   33 reviews 1,849

Address:

77 W Washington St Lower Level Chicago IL 60602 USA

Mission:

Silk Road Rising creates live theatre and online videos that tell stories through primarily Asian American and Middle Eastern American lenses. In representing communities that intersect and overlap, we advance a polycultural worldview.

2014 Top-Rated Nonprofit
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312-857-1234
http://www.silkroadrising.org

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Reviews for Silk Road Rising

Rating: 5 stars  

1 person found this review helpful

We are retired educators who worked extensively with multicultural issues. Silk Road Rising is a major force in improving racial and multicultural relations in the Chicagoland area. Some folks are seeing, perhaps for the first time, their lives and issues presented on stage. Others are walking in other people's sandals--all in a non-threatening venue. Every performance is well thought out and honed to perfection. Authenticity is key. Plays, like life, are nuanced.
The Silk Road staff reaches out to subscribers and potential audience members in meaningful ways. Opinions are sought; feedback is important. Silk Road Rising always creates dialog.
What a great gift to the artistic community and to society at large! Malik and Jamil are amazing human beings.

Steve Ham and Jo Ellen Ham

 
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Role: General Member of the Public
Rating: 5 stars  

I have had the pleasure to attend several Silk Road Rising performances over the last few years, and I am consistently floored by the magic they manage to work on stage. This is what theatre should be: well-performed, beautifully designed, substantive storytelling in a friendly, welcoming space (the founders, Malik and Jamil, are a delight). Even their staged readings shine with a polish so rarely found in quote/unquote "storefront" theatres. How lucky we are to have Silk Road Rising - a beacon of voices and talents so often overlooked by mainstream stages - just blocks away from the most iconic staples of the Chicago Theatre District. In my mind, Silk Road Rising contends with the best of them.

Will you volunteer or donate to this organization?

Likely

How much of an impact do you think this organization has?

A lot

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2016

 
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Rating: 5 stars  

1 person found this review helpful

After having seen the investigative, creative, educational and dramatic role Silk Road Rising played in relation to Mosque Alert I remained amazed with the group's work ethic, its ability to communicate and raise consciousness as well as its dedication not only to the drama but also to the dialogue. Chicago could not be more fortunate to have a theater group like this in times like today. Once Elmhurst finally gets its dedicated performing arts location underway, the group will be on the top of the list of people I recommend. Well-run charity that makes the donation decision easy.

Will you volunteer or donate to this organization?

Likely

How much of an impact do you think this organization has?

Life-changing

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2016

 
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Role: Professional with expertise in this field
Rating: 5 stars  

1 person found this review helpful

Silk Road is one of the most important voices in Chicago Theatre and in service of the entire community. Their work puts Chicago into the global conversation with fearless, challenging, and enlightening ideas in a passionate and compassionate context. The current production of Mosque Alert addresses one of the most critical topics we currently face and one in which we must all find our voices.

 
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Role: Professional with expertise in this field
Rating: 4 stars  

I am an actor and Silk Road Rising has been instrumental in helping my career to blossom. As a matter of fact, we were both "born" around the same time. I had come to Chicago in the Autumn of 2002 to pursue acting, and I somehow found out about this company then called Silk Road Theatre Project and the show they were mounting, Jamil Khoury's "Precious Stones". I attended a performance (it was actually one of the very first shows I had seen in the city) and immediately knew I had to reach out to them. I just knew we were right for each other; I am an Arab-American, and I was very interested in helping them with their mission of putting stories on stage that were written by playwrights of Asian/Middle Eastern ancestry featuring actors of similar ancestry. It was a perfect beginning for me, and over the course of the next decade, we worked together many, many times. I not only got to perform a few times in various remounts of "Precious Stones", but I participated in one of their biggest shows to date, "Merchant on Venice", as well as smaller- but every bit as interesting- staged readings. I've loved and appreciated it all. Working with Jamil and Malik is just a lovely experience every time; they are incredibly supportive and admiring of our work, and sit in the audience quite often during the run of a show, as they are such fans of the theatre. Working with them, in short, feels like coming home. I am incredibly grateful for getting to work with them so much over the years, and grateful to them for giving so many diverse artists a much-needed chance to shine.

 
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Rating: 5 stars  

I was the minister of the Chicago Temple when Malik and Jamil came to me with their idea of starting a theater as a response to 9/11. How best can we get to know each other across cultural and ethnic boundaries? By telling our stories to each other. For over a decade I have sat in the audience and learned what I never otherwise would have known about people half way around the world and just around the corner.

What Silk Road Rising provides on stage, on line, and on campus is stunning and impactful.

 
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Rating: 5 stars  

1 person found this review helpful

I happened across Silk Road Rising as a volunteer usher, but their ability to tell the stories of Middle Eastern and Asian people with compassion, dignity, and vigor quickly turned me into a donor. We don't have much to give, but their work is so critical to a fully inclusive society that I can't imagine not doing everything I can to support their continuance.

 
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Rating: 5 stars  

Silk Road Rising has been one of the most inspiring companies that I have had the honor of working with. They open a forum in which the Chicago community is allowed insight to the often overlooked experience of immigrants in this country. It has been an honor to work with The wonderful co-founders of Silk Road Rising, Malik Gillani and Jamil Khoury, and I look forward to working with them in the future. Support of this company is integral to bring the marginalized experience of minority cultures and races to light within Chicago's vast theatre community.

 
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Role: Professional with expertise in this field
Rating: 5 stars  

I have worked with over thirty theaters and arts organizations over the past three decades. Silk Road Rising Theatre in Chicago is the most efficiently operated of all of them, but what makes it stand out is that its founders care very deeply about the organization's mission. Theater, when it succeeds, is perhaps the single best tool for raising public awareness about complex social and political issues. No one in the U.S. non-profit sector is doing that more effectively than Jamil Khoury and Malik Gilani. Silk Road Rising is a ray of light, helping its audience re-think the simplistic notions parroted in the mainstream media about culture, race and politics. The organization in its structure and in its dealings with artists and audience mirrors its mission of treating every individual as a complex and humane individual. It’s actually difficult to imagine a non-profit that does a better job of serving the community.

 
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Rating: 5 stars  

I attend the First United Methodist Church at the Chicago Temple and learned of Silk Road Theatre through that group, which houses the theatre company. I'm also a frequent theatre-goer, with season tickets to four Chicago theatres. When I discovered Silk Road Theare (now Silk Road Rising), I was excited because they are meeting a great need in telling stories of specific groups of people along the Silk Road--using playwrights and actors who have stories to tell which often don't get portrayed in other theatres. As a former teacher who worked many years in diversity education, I know how important it is that people have an opportunity to see their own lives reflected in the stories told in literature or on stage. Equally important is the opportunity for others to learn about people from these cultures--and theatre transports us, helping us walk in others' shoes, to experience in some way what they are living out. Silk Road Theatre not only provides excellent theatre experiences, it also builds bridges of understanding.

 
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