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 Prayas Theatre



Nationality:    New Zealander
email:    n/a     Website:    n/a

Literary Agent:    n/a

Prayas Theatre presents devised Indian theatre in a modern environment to New Zealand audiences in the hope of adding a richness and depth to the local scene and inviting an exchange of ideas from their culture to broaden understanding

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below is a list of Prayas Theatre's plays - click on a Play Title for more information

        Rudali The Mourner

Rudali The Mourner

Performed in English, this gritty new play by the Auckland Indian group Prayas deals with some of India's most potent social issues; caste and the role and place of women in Indian society. Rudali-the Mourner is set in the village of Tohri in Eastern India - although it could easily be any rural community in India, or even any place else - where powerful men exploit women: the wife, the neighbour and the local prostitute. In Tohri, as in many places, women of a lower caste are hired as mourners upon the death of rich upper-caste males. A Rudali (rou-daali) is paid to grieve aloud publicly so the family of the dead retain their upper caste dignity befitting their social status. Sanichari is mother-in-law to a beautiful and feisty woman who certainly does not accept her place or fate and sets out to defy the village rules. Around them in the village are a host of lively characters, from caring and conniving neighbours, a long lost friend, the comic village priest, ruthless landlords, some brazen prostitutes and a wickedly endearing old nag. Together, they weave a story of friendship, treachery, greed, lust and duplicity around the unusual business of 'Rudali professional female mourners. Sanichari ultimately becomes an icon of empowerment for tribal low-caste women. With Cook Islander Patricia Wichman in the lead, multi-cultural group Prayas have gone outside Auckland's growing Indian community to come up with a multi-ethnic cast and crew. -

based on the short story by Mahasweta Devi

1st Produced:
Tapac Theatre, Western Springs, Auckland     18 May 2012


1st Published:
-   -


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If Publisher (above) is underlined then the play may be purchased by direct click from the Publisher, otherwise (below) are AbeBooks for secondhand, signed & 1st eds and other Booksellers for new copies


piece 75 min

Male:  -            Female:  3            Other:  ensemble

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