By MENDOCINO BEACON | April 13, 2023 at 6:00 a.m.
Mendocino Theatre Company is thrilled to welcome a brilliant new actor to Mendocino and the MTC stage.
Tooba Imran, who portrays Yasmeen Al Hamadi in MTC’s upcoming production of Paradise by Laura Maria Censabella, was born in Pakistan, where she lived until age 17, when her family established permanent residence in New Jersey, USA. After graduating from Rutgers University, Tooba moved westward to work as a television and film actress in the Los Angeles area. Last year she married Abdallah Saeed and relocated to Silver Spring, Maryland, where Abdallah runs a family-owned business, and Tooba is employed as an HR specialist at Amazon.
Tooba’s love for acting was born on the stage of her 2nd-grade play “George and the Giant Peach.” What was then a dream became her passion when she enrolled in the Terry Knickerbocker acting studio (NY) and graduated from their 2-year Meisner Conservatory program in 2021. She later kept up her training through recurring scene study classes at The Berg Studio in LA, CA. When not acting or watching good TV/film/theater – you will find Tooba with her two sweet cats – Al and Jammy – or launching a new clothing line.
Tooba’s purpose is not only to fulfill her love of acting but also to increase Muslim representation on stage and screen and utilize the power of storytelling to change the negative portrayals of Muslim Americans in media. “I love that this play (Paradise) shows that religion and culture are two separate entities.”
The real representation will be here when Muslim characters and stories can be more than just overtly good or bad. It will be complex and messy and unpredictable, and for that, we need more Muslim writers and creatives and certainly more women who have greater creative autonomy. “ I love that this play shows that religion and culture are two separate entities.”
“We all know the power of film; we all know there’s almost nothing more powerful than to see people on film that look and talk like you, like we do.” Mira Nair Audiences can see Tooba perform in Paradise any Thursday, Friday, Saturday, or Sunday between April 27 and May 28 at Mendocino Theatre Company, 45200 Little Lake Street, Mendocino, CA. For more information about the play and to buy tickets, please call 707-937-4477 or go to Mendocinotheatre.org.