Suehyla El-Attar

Suehyla El-Attar has been a professional stage actor for nearly 19 years and a professional film/TV actor for 10 years. As a playwright, she had her first play produced in 2006 at Horizon Theatre. She has received a couple of awards for her writing. She has worked as a dramaturg with several organizations in Atlanta, helping other professional playwrights understand how to better structure their plays and stay true to the story they really want to tell. In 2014, she was named the Alliance Theatre Artistic Fellow, focusing specifically on directing. When she teaches, her main goal is to point out that this art form of playwriting is one of the many paths people use to tell stories, and stories are a basic human function. The most important element in a story is want. She tells the students she encounters that nothing is more boring than a story lacking want, just like nothing is more boring than a person who doesn’t care what they want. You have to want if you want to move and advance. In that way, we are all walking stories.

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Arts Disciplines: Theatre/Drama, Storytelling, Creative Writing

Core Content Curriculum Areas: Theatre/Drama

Grade Levels: 6-8, 9-12

Geographic Availability: Metro Atlanta, North Georgia

Program Fees:

  • Workshop fees – $500 (which includes travel)
  • Residency fees – 1 week – $2,500 (which includes travel); 2 weeks – $4,000 (which includes travel)

Artistic Profile:

Suehyla El-Attar has been a professional stage actor for nearly 19 years and a professional film/TV actor for 10 years. As a playwright, she had her first play produced in 2006 at Horizon Theatre. She has received a couple of awards for her writing.

Suehyla has worked as a dramaturg with several organizations in Atlanta, helping other professional playwrights understand how to better structure the play and stay true to the story they really want to tell. In 2014, she was named the Alliance Theatre Artistic Fellow, focusing specifically on directing. When she teaches, her main goal is to point out that this art form of playwriting is one of the many paths people use to tell stories, and stories are a basic human function. The most important element in a story is want. She tells the students she encounters that nothing is more boring than a story lacking want, just like nothing is more boring than a person who doesn’t care what they want. You have to want if you want to move and advance. In that way, we are all walking stories.   

Teaching Experience:

Suehyla began teaching with a summer drama camp in 2005, working with 8-12 year olds, as a playwright instructor. She stayed with that camp for several years. It worked mostly like a babysitting option for parents during the summer and she learned how to make the most of that so that the kids would benefit, no matter what. She moved on to a more advanced summer program, Youth Creates, produced by 7 Stages Theatre. This was a 5-week program where nearly 40 youth, ages 10-20, were brought together to collaborate and make an original production (they would create an original story, music, write the script, do the publicity, and all their own tech) by the end of the five weeks. It was in this program where she really learned how to communicate most effectively because she was working with various economic and cultural backgrounds, not to mention age groups.

Sample Programs:

  • One-Week Playwright Residency: Students learn about plot structure, play formatting, write a one-minute play, and how to give and receive critical response feedback.
  • Two-Week Playwright Residency: Students learn about plot structure, script formatting, write a 10minute play, how to give and receive critical response feedback, and how to incorporate the feedback into a 2nd a draft.
  • One-Day Movement Storytelling Workshop: Using the Celeste Miller Style of storytelling, which intertwines personal narratives with self-found and inspired choreographed movement, students will learn to share and express their stories completely, learn how to create boundaries and move them, and, finally, learn what it means to be safe in one’s own story.

Sample Lesson Plans/Study Guides:

Program Photos: