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Waleed Akhtar

About Waleed Akhtar

Waleed is an award winning writer and actor, he won an Olivier for Outstanding Achievement in an Affiliate Theater for his play The P Word, and Most Promising Playwright at  The Off West End Awards. He is also a recipient of a MGC Futures bursary and Peggy Ramsey Foundation / Film 4 Playwrights’ Scheme. His short film LOST PARADISE was produced by UK Film Council, and played in festivals across Europe, he has contributed material for Sketchtopia and Newsjack (Radio 4) and Famalam.  Waleed is currently contributing an episode of a new romantic-comedy for an international streamer.

The Art of Illusion         2022/23
Hampstead Theatre
Original play text by Alexis Michalik

The P Word                       2022
Bush Theatre
Winner of Olivier Award for Outstanding Achievement in Affiliate Theatre 2023
Nominated for Best New Play at WGGB Awards 2022

“Akhtar is so adept at mingling stinging political critique and carefully-crafted storytelling that he makes it look easy, but it’s really not. Plays like this are rare, and this story deserves to have a wide audience fall in love alongside its awkwardly blossoming protagonists” – Time Out 

“Thrillingly Moving” – The Stage 

★★★★★ Time Out
★★★★★ Broadway World
★★★★★ New European
★★★★ The Guardian
★★★★ The Times
★★★★ The Financial Times

Kabul Goes Pop: Music Television Afghanistan                           2022
Winner Most Promising Playwright Off West End Awards 2023.
Brixton House, Mercury Theatre and HighTide
Inspired by a true story of Afghanistan’s first youth music TV programme.

“‘A fizzing tribute to bubblegum songs of hope” – The Guardian

★★★★★ New Statesman
★★★★★ New European⁠
★★★★ The Stage⁠

Sholay on the Big Screen                              2021
Off Stage Theatre, Bush & Nubian Life
Commission to write and perform a piece for the elderly in isolation for a lockdown project supported by the Bush about recollection. The piece was an inspired look at a classic Bollywood film through the eye of a lonely millennial.

I Don’t Know What To Do                        2020
Vault Festival
Working with director and activist on Zoe Lafferty on this piece about climate change, privilege and race for the Vault Festival. Evening Standard pick of the fest 2020.

Famalam Season 4                          2021
Two sketches selected for the season 4 pilot of Famalam, ‘A Spoken Word Poem to Sell you Stuff’ and the Nigerian Aunties asking ‘Why haven’t you had a Baby yet’.

Lost Paradise
Short film (Writer/Director),
B3 Media/ UK Film Council
Ismat once saw a future and now only sees a past. But can she recapture something that is perhaps lost forever? A 12-minute dramatic fiction short. OFFICIAL SELECTION: Encounters Film Festival 2010, East End Film Festival 2010, London Asian Film Festival 2010, 49th Golden Knight Malta International Film Festival 2010, London Short Film Festival 2011 AWARDS / NOMINATIONS: Satyajit Ray Award – Nominated, Golden Knight Malta International Film Jury- Special mention.

The film can be watched at


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