A new, two-part stage adaptation of the 4,000-year-old Sanskrit poem Mahabharata will play at Shaw Festival in Canada this fall. The production, which will feature an all-South Asian cast, is a joint presentation from Toronto’s Why Not Theatre and Shaw Festival, which commissioned and developed the piece.
Mahabharata is adapted by Miriam Fernandes and Ravi Jain (who also directs), using poetry from Carole Satyamurti’s Mahabharata: A Modern Retelling and from an original concept developed with Jenny Koons.
The production, which will run August 15–September 19 at The Shaw's Festival Theatre in Niagara-on-the-Lake, will feature Praneet Akilla, Nadine Bhabha, Hamed Dar, Jay Emmanuel, Miriam Fernandes, Harmage Singh Kalirai, Darren Kuppan, Goldy Notay, Nadeem Phillip, and Navtej Sandhu.
Both parts—Karma: The Life We Inherit and Dharma: The Life We Choose—will run in repertory, with some two-show days where a community meal will be served during the interval. For tickets and more information, click here.
The production includes designs by Camellia Koo, lightin by Kevin Lamotte, projections by Hana S. Kim, sound design by Suba Sankaran and John Gzowski, and music by Suba Sankaran and John Gzowski, with Ed Hanley and Hasheel Lodhia. Lodhia also serves as traditional music consultant. The show's producers are Kevin Matthew Wong and Kendra Bator.
Mahabharata has been previously adapted for the stage and screen by Peter Brook.