What is the role of theater and art in a world dominated by terrorism and hostility? This is the central question of A Room in India ("Une chambre en Inde"), the latest epic by the matriarch of exploratory French theater, Ariane Mnouchkine, and her company, Théâtre du Soleil. After astonishing Park Avenue Armory audiences with the two-part Les Éphémères in 2009, the visionary collective returns for the North American premiere of this landmark new work, which follows the adventures of a touring French theater company stranded in India without a director while the world around them falls into disarray.
Performed by 35 multinational actors, this tour-de-force transcends Eastern and Western drama and features a special performance of Terukkuttu — a traditional form of theater practiced in South India. The production touches on pressing issues that societies around the globe are currently facing, from terrorism and religious extremism to climate change and gender equality. The end result is a manifesto on the power of theater to heal a community as well as an exploration of how to talk about the chaos of a world that has become incomprehensible.