Photo credit: Ramin Karimloo and Nadim Naaman (Photos courtesy of Kevin Wilson PR)

Nadim Naaman and Ramin Karimloo lead new Persian inspired musical ‘Rumi’

The entire cast is made of performers from Middle Eastern, African and Asian heritages.

Sophie Thomas
Sophie Thomas

A new musical inspired by 13th century Persian philosopher and poet is in the works, it has been announced. Eponymously titled Rumi: The Musical, the musical is created by Dana Al Fardan and Nadim Naaman, their latest work since Broken Wings at Theatre Royal Haymarket.

Rumi was a 13th-century Persian poet, whose influence has transformed the lives of those usually conflicted by ethnic divisions, and has since been hailed the "most popular poet" in the United States. Rumi: The Musical will dramatise his legacy, exploring the relationship between Rumi and his mentor Shams Tabrizi. But, to form this powerful friendship, Rumi's family are sidelined, but this personal cost allows for a global spiritual change.

Rumi: The Musical is created by Dana Al Fardan and Nadim Naaman. Al Fardan said: "Writing 'Rumi' has been the ultimate journey in unraveling components that are socially constructed from those that form our own personal truth and consciousness.

Naaman spoke of the show's themes too, saying: "The show's integral themes of personal discovery, reflection and the pursuit of fulfilment have been lived and breathed worldwide due to the pandemic, and the messaging of this piece is perhaps even enhanced as a result."

Casting includes Naaman in the title role, previously playing Raoul in The Phantom of the Opera at Her Majesty's Theatre. Ramin Karimloo will play Shams Tabrizi, with Casey Al-Shaqsy as Kimya, Soophia Foroughi as Kara, Sharif Afifi as Sultan Valed, Ahmed Hamad as Aladdin, Irvine Iqbal as Husam and Alim Jayda as Sayyed.

The Rumi company is completed by Roshani Abbey, Amira Al Shanti, Eva-Theresa Chokarian, Maëva Feitelson, Sasha Ghoshal, James Hameed, Blythe Jandoo and Aliza Vakil, with the full cast comprised of performers with Middle East, North African and South Asian backgrounds.

Rumi will premiere as a semi-staged concert at the London Coliseum, with performances on 23 - 24 November. The show will also feature a 25+ piece orchestra.

You can listen to the Rumi album below. 

Photo credit: Ramin Karimloo and Nadim Naaman (Photos courtesy of Kevin Wilson PR)

Article Updated: 9 September 2021

Originally published on

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