British Asian theatre research conference

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Asian theatre experts to offer views

BRITISH Asian theatre arts will be celebrated and explored at a major international conference at the University of Exeter in April. 

The event is a culmination of a 4-year research project led by the Drama Department to address the lack of resources in the study of British Asian theatre that offers a historical and critical analysis of South and British Asian drama in the UK. 

Over 35 theatre practitioners will be participating at the event, exploring the history and development of British Asian Theatre from past to present.  In the talks and round-table discussions a range of themes will be discussed including the role of music, language and dance, stage design, actor training, the influence of tradition on contemporary theatre, politics of funding and ghettoisation of Asian arts verses representation in mainstream theatre.

Internationally renowned Asian theatre practitioners including Anuradha Kapur (Director, National School of Drama Delhi), Girish Karnad, India’s much awarded playwright and director, Rahul Varma, Artistic Director of the Montreal based theatre company Teesri Duniya will be amongst the speakers.

The project is led by Professor Graham Ley with Research Fellow Dr Sarah Dadswell and additional project members including Dr Jerri Daboo, Stephen Hodge and a PhD studentship taken by Chandrika Patel. 

Professor Ley said of the conference: “It is a unique event gathering those practitioners involved in the creation of British Asian theatre over the last 30 years, a retrospective of the diversity of activity. It is also a rallying call for self representation by British Asians which contrasts with the representation of Asians by others in the media or elsewhere.”

The British Asian Theatre: From Past to Present is on 10 -13 April at the University of Exeter and is available to delegates who register.  

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