Imaginging the Future India
Scientific advances, and scientific research are having a massive impact in India. Genetic modification, birth control, organ donation, pesticide pollution, HIV, inherited diseases – all are critically live concerns. The ethical, economic and political debate about biomedical science is keenly felt on a day-to-day basis. What India experiences and thinks about these issues today will lead the world tomorrow.
Shifting from a Eurocentric perspective, Theatrescience felt an urgent need to explore Indian ideas, and to investigate the connections between culture and science on the subcontinent. To this end, three of the Theatrescience team headed off late last year on a ten-day research trip which took them to Kolkata, Mumbai and Bangalore.
Theatrescience hosted wide-ranging discussions and eleven workshops with theatre writers, directors, performers, writers and companies, and with science, technology and arts students.
The team returned having learned of the centrality of biomedical science to a variety of key debates in India’s social, cultural and political arenas. Importantly, it emerged that practitioners there are truly inspired by the idea of creating a crucible for the fusion of theatre and science.
Indian practitioners and scientists were keen to collaborate with the team to produce a major project to exploit some of Theatrescience’s techniques to develop and innovate new approaches to enhance Theatrescience’s future effectiveness.
Imagining the Future IV: Theatrescience India at the National Centre for Biological Sciences is the most recent phase of a project that began in Plymouth, UK in 2003. The first Imagining the Future brought together scientists, writers, actors and directors for a series of workshops and seminars, and resulted in four new plays based around biomedical science. This was followed by ‘Theatre of Science’, an year-long programme of work which combined science with theatre, in association with the Theatre Royal, Plymouth.
In September 2006 Rebecca Gould, Associate Director at the Theatre Royal Plymouth, Jeff Teare, Freelance Director and ‘Theatre of Science’ Consultant and Director and Simon Turley, Playwright, visited Kolkata, Mumbai and Bangalore. They wanted to explore ways in which Theatrescience – an idea developed from the Theatre Royal Plymouth’s ‘Theatre of Science’ project and from other work developed by the team on a similar theme - could operate in India.
- ‘Bad Blood Blues’ performed at the Museum of Life in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
- Something Somatic
- NCBS Residency and Plays
- ‘Telling Stories’ Wellcome Trust International Public Engagement Workshop
- Theatrescience in Uganda
- India in London
- Imaginging the Future India
- The Theatre of Science at Theatre Royal Plymouth