For Christmas season 2014 the congregation of Almanarah Presbyterian Church joined together to put on a play called “Dream House” that was written by Reverend N William Khalil. The theme was what is your foundation built on? The played was filmed and turned into a film with the focus towards being a ministry in the Middle East which is where almost all of Almanarah members originate from . It was then remounted in May 2015.
“Dream House”, is a comedy but has a message that hits “home” in the final scenes. It speaks about a family that consists of a Father, Mother and two children, who all live a very cheap life. They prevent themselves from living a normal or even basic life in order to save enough money, so they can build their own new “Dream house”. They are looking for the “right” person or company to build their house. The family must make a tough choice that will decide their future and what path they will take. Will the dream house meet their expectations or will it crumble to the ground causing them to lose their dream of joy and peace forever because of a foolish choice? The production features Michael Tanios, Jonia Espeiro, Monica Saad, Veronica Saad, Mamdouh Haddad, Jamal Rashmawi, Nabil Hana, Mary Nashed, Rafat Sayegh, and Matthew Marshall .
The writer Rev. Khalil offers this about the production, “It is very funny. You will laugh when you see this play.” Of course that is as long as you understand Arabic as most of the play is in Arabic with some English. Translation during the play was provided as was translation done for the film. Even Matthew Marshall the English speaking Youth Leader of the church has a guest role in which he speaks English as a tourist. “It’s a fun production even with the bit of language barrier there is. This production proves that comedy is a universal language.” Marshall adds. Marshall goes on to say a lot of the jokes of the comedy context in his part are based off Arabic sayings and how things get lost in translation between Arabic and English. So he feels the film will be a good fit to be sent back to the Middle East for Christians. Under all the humour this play has a deeper message. “You need to be careful what kind of foundation you build your life on” Khalil adds.. Marshall goes on to add “it very much has a core story dealing with Matthew 7:24-27 about is your foundation in your life build on a Rock or on Sand” when talking about Khalil story. Khalil takes it one step further in talking about writing the play and explains that his vision came right from John 3:16 “God so loved the world that He gave His one and only Son so that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.”
The re-mount for May 2015 came after the overwhelming response following the original show by those that saw it and word spread of the quality of the show, with many others who missed the original begging for an opportunity to see the live version again. The two play versions and the film were directed and co-produced by the award winning director Matthew Marshall.
The production is listed on IMDb (http://www.imdb.com/title/tt4247944/combined).