A Passage to India to hit New York

  • Indo-Asian News Service, PTI, New York
  • |
  • Updated: Aug 14, 2008 17:00 IST

This November, a staged version of EM Forster's classic novel A Passage to India will hit New York.

It will be presented by Britain's Shared Experience Theatre at the Brooklyn Academy of Music (BAM) as part of the Next Wave Festival 2004.

Co-produced with the Nottingham Playhouse, the play has received the usual glowing reviews given to the London-based theatre company best known for its adaptations of novels to the stage.

Though the setting of the play is India, and the music that accompanies this play is provided by two composer-performers of South Asian origin, Chandru and Sirishkumar, Forster's book is not so much about Indians as about India - as seen by Englishmen at the beginning of the last century.

In fact, as in Tom Stoppard's Indian Ink, which was recently premiered in New York, India is seen through the eyes of English women - in this case, Adela Quested and her proposed future mother-in-law, Mrs. Moore.

The two women have made the passage by sea. In their quest to get to know India, they meet an Indian Muslim doctor, Aziz, who accompanies them on a picnic to nearby rock-cut caves. Dizzied by the heat - and by some of the erotic sculptures in the caves - Quested accuses the doctor of sexual assault.

Aziz's trial takes place against a backdrop of inter-cultural and inter-communal, not to mention inter-gender, misunderstandings and tensions - some amusing, some violent.


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