fringeNYC 2016 Recap #3

HONOURConfessionsofaMumbaiCourtesan16-4690

Honour: Confessions of a Mumbai Courtesan by Dipti Mehta; Directed by Mark Cirnigliaro

I recently saw Born into Brothels about on the red light district in the the slums of India and was completely taken aback. I wasn’t surprised that there was prostitution because that would be naive, but there was a part of me that hoped that this issue wouldn’t be a part of my culture. For a culture that created the Kama Sutra and tantric sex, tonight’s performance reminded me that many a girl/woman/matriarch has to be a queen to many kings in one night especially if that is your destiny.

Dipti Mehta bravely writes and performs Honour: Confessions of a Mumbai Courtesan which tells the story of a young girl, Rani, who dreams of a life beyond the sex industry and her mother who has secured her next station in life for a good price. Mehta seamlessly moves through her characters to  tell us the story through her mother, her father, a pundit, the neighbor, and a pimp (amongst others). In typical Indian fashion, Mehta incorporates traditional and Bollywood dancing as part of the narrative through her many characters.

Though I loved the bilingual aspect, the mix of Hindi and English pulled me out of the show at times. My own Hindi is rudimentary and very basic. Actually, I should just admit I don’t speak Hindi at all. I also yearned for a set to transport us to the “Fuck Lane” so we could grasp a sense of location and poverty.

That being said, I enjoyed the performance and seeing an Indian actress on the stage. I appreciated Mehta bringing attention to the sex industry. To learn more about her efforts with Apne Aap, an international aid organization dedicated to the saving of young girls from sex trade, visit www.apneaap.org.

Show Info:

FRI 8/26 @ 2
SAT 827 @ 5

VENUE #8: WOW Cafe
59-61 East 4th Street, #4
(between Bowery and 2nd Avenue)

Click HERE for more info.

The Experience is Sometimes Not Knowing 

Last night I spent the evening with a theatre company that produced a show of which I wasn’t familiar. I love seeing shows that I don’t know. I had seen a show earlier in the week in the same fashion. I received an invite and I didn’t ask what I was seeing. It was really pretty awesome. I walked into the both spaces as a visitor in a new locale. I stepped in and took it all in – the space, the seating, the set. Then I sat down and was curious about what was going to happen. Both spaces were not conventional. The audience was a part of the action, the story, and the show. Yet, not intrusive. Subtle. I had no preconceived notions and was not wearing any of my hats (producer, director, publicist). I was just an audience member there for the ride. 
However, once curtain came down (metaphorically) I was able to appreciate how it was produced, directed and promoted. I was also able to really appreciate artists telling stories. That’s why I love theater so much. Why do this if it isn’t going to move someone? Who knows who’s in the audience who really needed that inspiration. 

This summer is full with great theater. I am thrilled to be on the production team on some amazing shows. Continue creating and see you at the show!