Woman’s fury to take centre stage

‘Silappatikaram’ with Kannagi in Auckland on March 18

Venkat Raman – 

venkat@indiannewslink.co.nz

“Anger is only one short of danger,” someone said in the 19th century except that the adage was proved in the South Indian city of Madurai several hundred years earlier.

It was an era when chaste women could order the heavens to open up or the Gods to remain still and hence it was hardly surprising that a woman of virtue could burn down an entire city.

‘Is Paris Burning?’ asked Larry Collins and Dominique Lapierre in their book of the same name and in Poompuhar, a Tamil Nadu town, someone asked, ‘Is Madurai down to ashes?’

Great Epic

‘Kannagi,’ the woman in rage who sent an erring king to his Maker and set a city in flames to prove the innocence of her husband is the fiery character in ‘Silappatikaram,’ one of the five great epics of Tamil literature.

The epic, which literally means ‘The Tale of an Anklet’ will make it to the Auckland stage in an encapsulated form at Dorothy Winstone Centre, Auckland Girls Grammar School on Saturday, March 18, 2017.

Much of Ilango Adigal’s ‘Silappatikaram’ has undergone twists and turns at the hands of film producers over the years but the core of the story has remained: that no person, least of all a ruler, can afford to pass judgment unless all facts are heard.

That would also be the essence of the forthcoming Dance Drama, scripted, produced and directed by Madurai R Muralidharan, a Bharata Natyam exponent and performer.

Students’ Show

Renuka Ketheesan, Director & Principal of Sai Natyalaya will present ‘Silappatikaram’ with her students.

She said that it was an honour to work with Mr Muralidharan, who is also a well-known lyricist, composer and choreographer.

“He has beautifully scripted the story of ‘Silappatikaram’ to be presented as a Tamil dance musical, which has been staged in many parts of the world, winning raving reviews and great accolades from audiences,” she said.

Further details will be published in our next issue.

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