Shelley Silas

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Shelley Silas is a British playwright. Born in Calcutta, India in 1959 of Sephardi Jewish heritage, she moved to Golders Green, North London aged two. Her father had also been born in Calcutta and had moved to Mandatory Palestine at the age of two and later fought in the 1947–1949 Palestine war; her Indian-born mother left her wealthy family and moved to London at nineteen.[1]


In 2002, she won a Pearson award and was writer-in-residence at London's Bush Theatre. Her stage plays are published by Oberon.

Her work for BBC Radio Four includes The Sound of Silence (short-listed for the 2003 Imison Award,[2] creating and co-writing The Magpie Stories;,[3] adapting Hanan al-Shaykh's novel Only in London and co-adapting Paul Scott's The Raj Quartet (with John Harvey).

She has also compiled and edited an anthology of short stories, 12 Days, published by Virago Press.

Stage plays[edit]

  • Shrapnel (1999)
  • Falling (2002)
  • Calcutta Kosher (2004)
  • Mercy Fine (2005)
  • Eating Ice Cream on Gaza Beach (2008)

Radio plays[edit]

  • The Sound of Silence (2002)
  • The Magpie Stories (2002)
  • Collective Fascination (2005)
  • Ink (2005)
  • Nothing Happened (2005, co-written with Luke Sorba)
  • Molly's Story (2007)
  • I Am Emma Humphreys (2009)

Current radio commissions (2010)

  • The People Next Door
  • Mr Jones Goes Driving

Radio adaptations[edit]


  • The Barkers Treatment commission, Monkey Kingdom


  1. ^ "Shelley Silas and Evan Davis share their coming out experiences". Independent.
  2. ^ "list of 2003 Imison Award finalists".
  3. ^ "Magpie Stories transmission listings".

External links[edit]