Press Release – Prayas
Freedom that is caged inside your heart could escape in your dreams – Rabindranath Tagore Prayas – who now have a rich collection of plays to their credit – began with the idea of bringing the best of Indian culture and drama to a New Zealand audience …Freedom that is caged inside your heart could escape in your dreams – Rabindranath Tagore
Prayas – who now have a rich collection of plays to their credit – began with the idea of bringing the best of Indian culture and drama to a New Zealand audience in English.
Their latest play is Kingdom of Cards (Tasher Desh) and will be performed at TAPAC in Western Springs, 24-27 November. The year 2011 also marks the 150th anniversary of its playwright, the remarkable Nobel laureate Rabindranath Tagore (1861-1941).
He grew up under British rule and never ceased to attack any social stigma, prejudices and bigotry. The play’s humour and criticism find a ready place in modern New Zealand life. The Kingdom of Cards – a colourful music and dance comedy tells the story of a Prince who wants to be free from the burden of a monotonously lavish life.
So he sails off with a merchant friend to seek adventure and challenge in unknown lands. ‘Our peace and calm are like an ancient tree. Worms have burrowed into it and it’s dead: we want to cut it down’ In Alice in Wonderland style, he ends up in a childlike world where everything is a card character.
The people live a stilted life and are guided by ‘rules’ and the hierarchy of cards. The play shows how the prince changes this world and brings romance, music and the beauty of movement into their lives. Tagore has cleverly criticised caste, class and meaningless rules and regulation. “You’re female – you should preserve peace. We’re male, and we must preserve culture”.
In presenting Kingdom of Cards, Prayas has reached out to the Auckland theatre community and involves players and crew of many different ethnicities. There will be a scheduled preview performance for media on 3 November, 6-9pm, refreshments provided.