(Killian Fox’s article appeared in the Observer, 3/24. The New York City memorial, in the video above, was held at St. Paul's Church on May 4th, 2011.)
On 4 April 2011, Juliano Mer-Khamis turned up unexpectedly at the Freedom theatre in Jenin and went inside to talk with his students and staff. Usually he'd call ahead whenever he planned a return to Jenin, but this time, driving up from Ramallah where he had just premiered a new production of a play by Eugène Ionesco, he gave no advance warning.
An actor and director who had forged a successful film and stage career in Israel, Mer-Khamis moved to Jenin in 2006 to set up the Freedom theatre in the city's sprawling refugee camp, one of the most deprived areas in the West Bank. In his five years as artistic director, he had created a hub of cultural activity in Jenin and, by touring home-grown productions abroad, had given young people in the camp a sense that they had a voice in the world.