Kabul Goes Pop review – a fizzing tribute to bubblegum songs of hope



Early 00s pop TV was fertile ground for hyperactive performances. From the flirty cheek of TMi to the saccharine staging of CD:UK, bubblegum pop, in a new millennium, found its perfect companion in fresh-faced presenters enthusing to viewers at home wishing to escape hormone-fuelled existences.


That use of music as a means of transport to an imagined space is universal. It takes us to Afghanistan in 2004 in Waleed Akhtar’s debut play, Kabul Goes Pop: Music Television Afghanistan, directed by Anna Himali Howard in a co-production with HighTide. Based on the true story of the country’s first pop TV show, Hop (here named Vox), Akhtar’s two-hander follows his fictional twentysomething presenters as they beam the finest boybands and girl groups to their teen audience.


Read the review in the Guardian.


[This piece was published on 19/05/22]