Turkish All-Women’s Theater Group

Personal Projects

Cennet Sener, right, an actress in the Arslankoy Theater Group, playfully kisses another member of their troupe before their show, in a small village outside of Adana, southern Turkey.

Ümmiye Koçak and her all women’s theater troupe have been educating audiences, through the plays written by Ümmiye, on the plight of women in rural Turkish villages for nearly two decades – bringing awareness on the violence inflicted on many of them. All the roles, even the male ones, are played by the female actors. Ümmiye has made a name for herself not only as a playwright but as an inspirational activist in ending violence against women and girls in Turkey.

The all-women Arslankoy Theatre Group performs plays about domestic violence and education in small villages in Turkey. I spent time with the players over a series of months, photographing their lives on and off the stage. The project was published in the Guardian Newspaper.