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The Bay’s Nadeem Islam Wants Better Deaf Representation In Mainstream TV

The hotly-anticipated third series of ITV’s The Bay is now underway. Following the departure of Morven Christie, who portrayed Lisa Armstrong in the first two seasons, viewers have been introduced to a string of intriguing new characters, as well as some familiar faces. One The Bay newcomer featured in season three is Nadeem Islam, who plays the character of Jamal Rahman. But, what is there to know about the actor?

Islam is a London-based actor with experience in television, comedy, presenting, and theatre. Before landing roles on major TV dramas, Islam trained in Community Art Practice at the BRIT School, where he graduated back in 2015. Some of the actor’s onscreen credits include Small World, the BBC’s See Hear, Deaf Funny, and Where I Belong — a role that bagged Islam a nomination for Best Actor by Deaffest, a UK Deaf Film/TV Festival. Meanwhile, Islam is also set to appear in the forthcoming BBC drama, Then Barbara Met Alan.

As mentioned, Islam’s most recent role can be seen in the third season of ITV’s The Bay, in which he takes on the role of Jamal Rahman.

Speaking to Radio Times, Islam, who is deaf, discussed his latest role and shared his views on representation for the Deaf community.

“We’re not there yet, still baby steps,” he said of deaf representation within the media. “It’s a long process, but definitely, it’s so important to have deaf representation in mainstream TV. Right now, there’s about 900,000 deaf people out there in the UK.” The actor continued, “You need to have that representation for deaf people, and it’s fantastic. To have deaf people in the story, it’s amazing. It’s great to have that there.”

Islam is joined in the cast of The Bay by Marsha Thomason, who portrays Lisa Armstrong’s replacement, DS Jenn Townsend.

According to an official synopsis, DS Townsend is “immediately thrown into the deep end when a body is found in the bay on her first day in the job. She must get under the skin of a grieving and complicated family if she has any chance of solving the premature demise of an aspiring young boxer.”

Also appearing in the ITV drama are Daniel Ryan as DI Tony Manning, Erin Shanagher as DS Karen Hobso, Michael Karim as Adnan Rahman, Rina Mahoney as Mariam Rahma, and Gary Lewis as Vinnie Morrison, among others.

The Bay Season 3 is currently airing on ITV.