Why tale of snake-charmers snatching baby girl gets new feminist slant in Bethnal Green
- Credit: Ahmed Kaysher
A baby girl stolen by snake-charmers is an old Bengali fairy tale that has been reinterpreted at Rich Mix with modern feminist arguments about abuse.
Reinterpreting the ancient ballad of the Mohuar Pala narrated in English opens for two days on Saturday (November 23) at the Bethnal Green venue.
It poses the question why a girl is snatched rather than a boy, suggesting women are "an easy option" to be abused and used as a commodity.
The popular ancient folk fable is the story of two snake-charming brothers stealing the baby during a famine which grows up to become an entertainer and keeps earning money for her abductors.
It is one of 16 Bangla festival season plays and poetry readings both in Bengali and English and workshops aimed at attracting Western audiences as well as promoting new works by the British Asian diaspora reinterpreting ancient stories and fairy tales.
You may also want to watch:
"Narration in English helps us connect to non-Asian audiences," director Ahmed Kyasher said. "It was a real challenge when we planned our first production to introduce this new art form in the West."
Mohuar Pala features singer-dancer Jessy Barua, actor Sonia Sultana, Tagore singer Imtiaz Ahmed and folk dancer Sohel Ahmed, in the production co-directed by Vidushi Chandra Chakraborty, the "torch bearer" of Hindustani classical music in the West.
Tickets for this Saturday 7.30pm performance and Sunday at 3.30pm at Richmix in Bethnal Green Road are available online:
- 1 Teenager found dead in Victoria Park
- 2 Driver arrested after police 'drugs patrol' stops car in Whitechapel
- 3 Drug and alcohol abuse by Tower Hamlets parents and children soars
- 4 Two in five people in Tower Hamlets may have had Covid-19
- 5 Tribute to 7th Barts Health Trust worker to die of Covid-19
- 6 Disgraceful management of the pandemic
- 7 'I can save the planet with my seaweed' scientist in east London claims
- 8 'Laptop bonanza' for schoolchildren in Poplar to help survive lockdown gloom
- 9 That's so raven: Everything you need to know about the guardians of the Tower
- 10 Pressure on government to provide laptops for lockdown learning