Not That Illegal




Strawberry One-Act Festival


Ali Can has been in the US as a Turkish immigrant for 10 years. He suddenly finds himself close to losing his residency due to unfortunate events. He convinces his best friend to join him to execute a highly risky plan against American Immigration Office. Shenanigans ensue.



Ali Can

Ali Can, a Turkish immigrant, is forced to end his 10-year long journey in the US due to unfortunate events. He convinces his best friend to help him with a highly risky plan to trick his arch-nemesis USCIS. Ali’s easygoing attitude seems to balance Joseph’s anxiety but it’s not certain whether it’ll continue during the interview or not. Find out how USCIS’s nerve-racking interview turns into a hilarious journey and a true test of our heroes’ friendship.

The Playwright

Yusuf Yildiz has been a farmer, pharmacist apprentice, computer engineer, software scientist, actor, and author. He has crossed the Atlantic Ocean and moved to the United States after spending 20 plus years filled with mathematics and science in Turkey. He secretly kept writing love poems while his classmates tried to prove the Riemann hypothesis. Writing or making people laugh have kept creative juices flowing while the practical world pulled him in the other direction. Everything became a little clearer once he stepped on stage as a thespian. He truly enjoys the creative aspect of writing and feels extremely fortunate to continue on his journey. He loves exploring serious topics using comedy and can’t resist sprinkling some Turkishness in every story.

  • Spring 2020 Turkish American Repertory Theatre & Entertainment

    Not That illegal will join an ensemble of immigrant stories to be performed on broadway. TARTE will collaborate with Kairos Italy Theater to bring this special performance to audiences.
  • February 2020 Symphony Space

    Not That Illegal will join the best plays from Strawberry One-Act Festival for a special off-broadway encore performance at Leonard Nimoy Thalia Theater.
  • September 2019 The Strawberry One-Act Festival

    The short version of Not That Illegal had a successful run at the festival and moved to the finals. It got nominated for Best Play.
  • November 2017 The Story Became A Stage Play

    The author finally wrote the short and also the full-length version of the play.
  • 2016 The First Spark

    The author was having issues with his green card process and it got creative juices flowing. The very first version was an experimental 10-minute sketch that nobody got to read.
  • 2008 Moving to America

    The author moved to the US to receive his master's degree from University of Houston.