Ever since reading Ira Hauptman’s “Partition”, I knew that one day I wanted to be a member of the team that would bring this beautiful play to life in Houston. Some eight years later, here we are!
Over the past few weeks, many people have approached me with the following question: So what is this play about anyway?
A directing teacher once told me that the first rule in approaching a well-written script is to admit that it’s beyond you – that you probably don’t know what it’s about. There are questions you will begin to ask, and there are discoveries you will make together with the cast, but don’t expect to find explicit answers by the end of the rehearsal process or by the end of this lifetime.
I could tell you the play is about Ramanujan, one of the most famous and mysterious mathematicians India (perhaps the world) has ever produced. I could say it’s a play dripping in numbers and covered in words. I could say there’s a sexy Indian goddess who has all the right answers and an obsessively insane and neurotic French mathematician. I could say it’s a colorful mosaic of cultural tapestries and enigmatic patterns. I could tell you it’s about the bizarre, creative, and destructive tension that exists between East and West, between Faith and Reason. Or I could come back to what every play and every day seem to really be about – friendship and love.
The articulation of these themes is not particularly useful as we prepare to enter the rehearsal room. They don’t move us anywhere. So I offer three questions:
1. How do you know what you know?
2. What separates you from me?
3. What’s your favorite number?
Theatre is one of the only art forms that changes, moves, and breathes with the audience. It’s an incredible dialogue. And if the stars align, it can be breathtaking. We look forward to our upcoming rehearsal process, but even more, we look forward to meeting you and diving into an infinite series of questions.
Come meet the cast, step on stage yourself, and enjoy some food and drinks with the Shunya team at Avant Garden this Saturday, May 4th at 7 PM!
Truly, madly, deeply…