Bringing alive World War II through folk art

A scene from the play, Land of Ashes and Diamonds (Part 1) , to be premiered at Alliance Francaise, Puducherry, on October 31.  

Puducherry-based Indianostrum Theatre is all set to revisit its 2009 production, ‘Land of Ashes’, in a play which is being co-produced by the Alliance Francaise of Puducherry.

The first of the three-part ‘Land of Ashes and Diamonds’ which is titled ‘Bread Puppet’ will make its Indian premiere here on October 31.

While the 2009 play examined the civil war in Sri Lanka at its peak through mythology, this play will be the coming together of a story from World War II and folk art. “In 2009, the war in Sri Lanka was happening at the time. There was no distance from what was happening. I wanted to see how we would re-consider the war now,” says Indianostrum Theatre founder Koumarane Valavane and director of the play. With his present fascination for folk art, he wanted to see how contemporary stories, whether it is the Sri Lanka war or the war in Syria can enter this world of folk art. ‘Land of Ashes’ has become something else in its new form, he says.

The World War II story is of a lady, Flora, who used bread crumbs to tell stories to children at a Nazi concentration camp. “Her story is one of resistance. I wanted to see how her story can make us understand war. The first part of the play looks at what happens when Flora’s story meets folk art team from India. The second part will see how this folk art team reacts and the third part will look at what becomes of this process,” says Mr. Valavane. The play will be staged on Saturday, at Alliance Francaise, Suffren Street at 7 p.m.

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Printable version | Jun 21, 2021 4:52:21 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/puducherry/bringing-alive-world-war-ii-through-folk-art/article7816918.ece

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