Friday, December 15, 2006

ASMITA plays Nov.-Dec 2006

Hidden Fires
solo Play by Rashi Bunny
22nd Dec.
Nandikar Theatre Feastival,

Mahesh Dattani's
11Dec.2006 at 6.30pm
Manch-Rangmanch National Theatre Festival

Mahesh datttani's
30 days in sept.
hindi translation by Smita Nirula
8th Dec.
LTG audi. ,6.30 pm

Final Solutions
Raipur IPTA national theatre festival festival 13nov.
Log -Baag,14 nov.
Final solutions 15th Nov. Bilaspur

Musical satire
Mote Ram ka Satyagrah
Adaptation by Habib Tanveer and Safdar Hashmi.
Music by Sangeeta Gaur

1st show-
On 25th November,2006
at PSK, Laxmi Nagar, Vikas Marg at 7 pm

2nd show-
On 30 th November
at LTG Auditorium,Copernicous Marg, Mandi House , 7pm
Neil Simons’s comedy play
based on Chekhov's stories
Directed By Arvind Gaur
29th Nov. at 7 pm
LTG auditorium, Mandi House, New Delhi
presented by Arth group

Manjula Padmanabhan's Hidden Fires
Solo By Rashi Bunny

Powerful hard hitting monologues on issues of violence,
intolerance, narrow concepts of community and nation,
each with a twist
that lifts it into the realm of real drama.
Award-wining play-wright Manjula Padmnabhan, in her
attempt to come to grips with the violence of these
times excels this suite of short one-handers which
leaves the audience both shaken and thoughtful.
'You say you're a lion, but your greatgrandmother,three
generations ago, she wasa deer , some one told us and that
makesyou a deer! And thats your Hidden Fire. Sowe have got to
put you out.
'A woman confesses that her husband has 'stamped out'
countless 'hidden fires' human lives that are less than human
to him, merely faceless threats to his own security and then
finds himself on the receiving end of the same ruthless treatment.
A young woman anchoring a television programme called 'Know the Truth'
smiles her way dismissively through a stream of panic-striken phone
calls from viewers reporting violence in their neighborhoods, refusing to
admit that the Government can be wrong in its insistence that the
situation is under control.And, in 'Invocation', the names of ordinary
people are used to create
a memorial to all those killed by violence through no fault of their own,
innocent victims whose names, sometimes, have been the sole cause of their

Manjula Padmanabhan
is a playwright, writer, illustrator & cartoonist and widely published.
Her play 'Harvest' was awarded Onassis International Cultural Prize for
Theatrical Plays in 1997.

The riots of 1984, in Delhi , still float in my eyes. More than 20 years and yet the horror stays in my memory. And stirs me. The three monologues we are presenting now are not slogan based anti-violence propaganda plays. They are an attempt to establish a dialogue amongst people, a voluntary decision to initiate an intense, serious over-hauling to our mindsets.The play is not about
highlighting communal harmony, or pointing the flows of the socio-political system, but it is aimed to be a reminder of the fact that - we all are humans, we all are on this earth together, we all share the same breath & same sky and the same aspirations for warmth and happiness. Let us be compassionate, let us be sensitive,
let us be humane.

These monologues were written at the time of the Gujarat riots in 2002, I began with the intention of making a record of what was happening in Gujarat , but by the item I finished 'Invocations', the last of five pieces, I realized it was pointless to tie them down to specific dates or personalities or governments.The despair I felt in 2002 was no different to what I had felt during the anti-Sikh riots of 1984 or while reading about the pogroms against the Jews in Hitler's Germany . There is a sameness about violent mobs that transends nations, communities, religions, politics. We go to war because of imagined differences between ourselves and our enemies but we are all much more the same than we are different.
It was in the name of that sameness that I wrote these pieces.

Following her graduation in Science from Delhi University
and after a brief stint at the Living Theatre Academy under Shi. E Alkazi, Rashi pursued her training in Theatre Arts and Design at the University of Alabama and Rutgers University , New Jersey , USA . She is a recipient of Young Artist Scholarship & Junior Fellowship from department of Culture, HRD and Ruby Llyod Artistic & academic Excellence award and Best International Student Scholarship Award in the USA . She is also Chosen as one of the 50 Icons: emerging personality of India in 2005 by Sahara Group. Bhishma Sahni's MADHAVI , her first Solo, directed by Arvind Gaur won accolades all over India and abroad. It received special award for experimentation
with tradition at International Solo Theatre Festival Armenia and “Colour of Nation” award at the International Theatre festival in NIZHNEVARTOVSK THEATRE FESTIVAL, Russia . Recently Madhavi was performed in Vangneray,Lyon International Theatre Festival March 2006, France. Manjula Padmanabhan's Hidden Fires was Rashi’s other solo directed by Arvind Gaur that has been selected by SKP as one of the best plays of year. It was also performed for Queen’s award project ( UK ) for Communal harmony. Walking Through the rainbow, her latest Solo premiered in Chennai and deals with domestic abuse and other NRI issues.Under the direction of Arvind Gaur, she has also acted
in Mahesh Dattani's Tara & Final Solution, Vijay mishra's Tatt Niranjana, Swadesh Deepak's Court Martial and Sabse Udas Kavita, Munshi Premchand's Moteram ka Satyagrah, Rajesh Kumar's Me Gandhi Bolto and Street play Teen Kanastar for Asmita theatre group, New Delhi.These plays have been performed for various Theatre festivals, Institutions and NGOs in India and abroad including NSD, SKP, Nehru Centre, IHC, Darpana Academy, IIT, Old World festival,British Council, Vivechana National festival, Muktibodh Natya Samaroh, World Social Forum, Satta Festival, JNU, IILM, PCVC, Stella Maris, DU, Jawahar Kala Kendra, Action Aid, Heinrich Boll Foundation, Armmono-II (ITI Unesco) and Nizhnevartovsk Theatre Festival. In USA , even though design was her main focus she acted as lead in many plays like - Beth Henley's Abundance & Jules Feiffer's Feiffers People and worked with directors like Karma Ibsen, Ward Haarbauer and Anne Car Michael. On her return to India , she received the Young Artist scholarship and worked under Shyamanand Jalan in Calcutta and was part of many productions, like Khamosh Adalat Jari Hai and Char Sau Karod Bhullakar. "Nabh Taaron Se Khandit Pulkit" translated from an American Dark comedy, was her directorial debute at PadatikAs Founder Director of Banjara Theatre Group at IIT Kharagpur, she has designed and directed Dharamveer Bharti's'Srishti ka Aakhiri admi', Sarveshwar Dayal Saxena's Bakri, Habib Tanveer's Gadhe and many open air productions like Daldal, Swaha-Swaha, Bandar Kaun, Girgit, Pahle Aap, Teen Apahij, Deewaren Kuchh Kehna Chahti hain, Haathi ki Po(n) etc. For the Children's Theatre Wing of Banjara, she has written and directed musicals like Veer Abhimani, Aazadi
Muft Nahin, TunTun TunTun Tana Bana, Education gives Real Freedom, Gopi Gayan Bagha bayen, Beda Dekho Ki. Rashi has conducted theatre workshops for Engineering and management students, children, Youth and adults from all kinds of background and judged many drama competitions in Bengal, Delhi and Rajasthan. For IHC, she has conducted Theatre workshops and was the coordinator for the Platform theatre. She is guest faculty at NIFT and has lectured widely in schools, colleges and institutes of repute in India and abroad.