Performance Studies: A continuing conversation: From Street to Page to Stage: A Panel Discussion on Abhi Subedi’s ‘Bruised Evenings’
From Street to Page to Stage: A Panel Discussion on Abhi Subedi’s ‘Bruised Evenings’
A discussion led by PhD Candidate Jiva Lamsal and chaired by Dr Paul Dwyer, with special guest appearances from the playwright himself, Prof Abhi Subedi, and the co-director, Dr Shiva Rijal.
Written in 2011, at a critical juncture in Nepal’s painful transition from monarchical rule towards parliamentary democracy, Abhi Subedi’s play, Bruised Evenings, is a wonderful example of how Nepali artists are able to make a very strong, contemporary political critique that is carefully veiled within aesthetic forms that are familiar to audience from their participation in rituals, devotional practices, folkloric performances and festivals. Specifically, the play repurposes the mythological narrative at the heart of the famous Bisket Jatra, an annual festival involving a public procession through the streets of Bhaktapur, one of the three districts of the Kathmandu Valley and a key centre of Newari culture. In this panel discussion, with the help of the playwright and co-director of Bruised Evenings, we will explore how theatrical performance can give sensuous form to the underlying social drama of recent Nepali history.
Abhi Subedi (Professor, Department of English, Tribhuvan University) is a playwright, poet, art critic and essayist. With over 10 plays and two dozen books to his credit, he is a leading voice in contemporary Nepali theatre and President of the Nepal Centre of the International Theatre Institute (UNESCO).
Shiva Rijal (Lecturer, Central Department of English, Tribhuvan University) was co-director of the premiere of Bruised Evenings. He has written numerous peer-reviewed articles on aspects of Nepali theatre and society. A PhD on cross-cultural theatre, Rijal conducted fieldwork research in Ubud, Bali under Assian Fellowship and published a monograph, Performing for Tourists: Redefining Performances, Performers and Audiences based on this research.
Jiva Lamsal (Lecturer, Department of English, Tribhuvan University) is currently completing his PhD in Theatre and Performance Studies at the University of Sydney. Jiva’s research on Nepali theatre and rituals has appeared in the Indian Theatre Journal, the Journal of Ritual Studies, and other peer-reviewed publications.
Paul Dwyer (Department of Theatre and Performance Studies, University of Sydney) has published widely on the work of Augusto Boal and various forms of “applied theatre”. He is also well-known for his work in verbatim/documentary theatre with companies such as Version 1.0 and PYT Fairfield.
AV Room, John Woolley Bldg, Rm S113, Sydney University