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New Play on Nirbhaya

  • JWB Post
  •  April 17, 2015

Actress Poorna Jagannathan used to live close to the bus stand in Delhi where Nirbhaya boarded the bus and later was gang raped to death.

Across the world in Montreal, Canada, internationally acclaimed playwright Yaël Farber was feeling similarly devastated by this incident. On Facebook, she posted a picture that she believed was of the victim along with one powerful line: My daughter, my mother, myself.

Poorna spotted this message and asked Yaël to collaborate urging to come to India to create a work with women ready to speak about sexual violence. Together they created the play ‘Nirbhaya’. Written and directed by Farber and produced by Poorna, the play recounts the horrific 2012 tragedy and uses it as a catalyst for cast members – who are all survivors of sexual violence – to share their own testimonies.

Yaël Farber says – “The work we are doing is grounded in the belief that each individual facing their own truth creates the possibility for change, and that’s what real revolution is. When you stay silent, that silence protects only one entity, and that’s the perpetrator. The cost on the self is exorbitant, because that silence is corrosive.”

“Nirbhaya” opens April 26 at the Lynn Redgrave Theater in Manhattan. You can see its  trailer here.

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