“We made it to the other side of the world.”

"Boy with a Suitcase" © Nationaltheater Mannheim / Schnawwl

As our characters Naz and Krysia have travelled half across the world in search of a better life in London, we have travelled 2 months to arrive on a common playground, which is our joint production of  “Boy with a Suitcase”. As always in a coproduction, we all started from different lands – aesthetically, working style wise and language wise.  The journey brought us along a sometimes bumpy road to a much deeper understanding of what theatre means to each one of us and how we inegrate it into our lives – 4 hours a day for joy or 8 hours a day to make a living? A place to think and play or a place to work? A place for perfection or a place for taking risks? Interestingly, we could never agree on what is “Indian” or “German” as  all of us come from a different theatre background within our cultures.

"Boy with a Suitcase" © Nationaltheater Mannheim / Schnawwl

Our two costume designers Amba from Delhi and Evi from Mannheim went on the wildest journey. They had to jointly design and make the costumes for Boy.  They are not only two artists in their own rights, they are also two very differently paced human beings. Where Amba feels and smells fabric and thinks of the larger philosophies behind patterns and colours, Evi has made 7 drawings, bought 5 pairs of funky sunglasses and tried them on the actors.  So these two set off in the early rehearsals in Nrityagram and the road was narrow and windy and sometimes their bus seemed to fall over the steep edge. But it never quite did.  On top, at the pass between two rugged mountain peaks, after heated discussions and some tears:

Evi ” I feel like a rock!”

Amba “And I feel like the water flowing around you.”

Evi “But I don’t want to be the rock!”

Amba ” Well then?”

and the valley on the other side was green and sunny and the Himalaya and the Niagara Falls started to find a way, with the help of a bottle of whiskey. And the next day, a monday, the bus flew along sunny plains, the two were high fiving each other, drawing, discussing, taking decisions, smoking, shopping and becoming – friends. Today they are planning their nex project together in India.

Practically, we have all become very cyber. Apart from our actress Pallavi, who owns three facebook accounts with the maximum amount of friends on each of them, our six school classes from Bangalore and Mannheim who have become cyber pen friends are blogging here:

Cyber Class Blog

we are blogging about rehearsals and the play here:

Do I know U? Blog

and finally we have produced an online programme brochure and saved some trees:

Programme brochure BOY in English

Programmheft JUNGE auf Deutsch

Thank you Yvonne Birghan-van Kruyssen, project manager at Theater an der Parkaue who suggested this programme at the Wanderlust meeting in Oldenburg last year!

And at last the first review in Mannheimer Morgen

The physical journey of the show is just beginning. After 10 days in Mannheim, it will open in Ranga Shankara in Bangalore on 16th june and run till 23rd of june. In 2012, we are invited by the Goethe-Institut to tour the play through India, as part of the “Germany in India” year.
Let’s pack our suitcases.

Tags: , , ,


leave a comment

You must be logged in to post a comment.