A chance spotting from the back of a refrigerated lorry of a poster marking Shakespeare’s 400th birthday spurs a refugee’s imagination to transport himself from his detention cell to a performance of A Midsummer Night’s Dream at London’s Globe Theatre. As we move between the 21st and 17th centuries, Shakespeare introduces Hamid both to a promised new land, and to a series of well- known plays through which Hamid tells his own experiences: of interrogation, of his journey from home: crossing the sea, getting lost in the forest, his months spent in the Calais Jungle refugee camp, and his arrival in the UK in the back of a refrigerated lorry. In turn, Shakespeare teaches Hamid how to speak English and how to behave as he navigates the London Underground, and gives him a helping hand at the Home Office. The book is created in collaboration with award-winning theatre company Good Chance who have worked with Adin since meeting him in their pop-up dome in the Calais Jungle.
‘Hamid and Shakespeare is the story of two people from different worlds colliding and finding that despite, or perhaps because of, their differences, they need each other. It’s a rip-roaring adventure that sees England and Hamid’s homeland seen through the eyes of newcomers. And it is this new lens, new perspective, new energy that we are so desperately in need of.’ – Good Chance Artistic Directors Joe Murphy and Joe Robertson