On December 16, 2012, a young woman boarded a bus in Delhi heading for home. What happened next changed countless lives forever.
It was a violent incident that shook the world. It also provided the motivation behind Nirbhaya; a play based on real life experiences that breaks the silence around women whose lives have been shattered by sexual violence.
From internationally acclaimed playwright and director, Yaël Farber, Nirbhaya tears away at the shame which has kept survivors silent. Made up of moving personal testimonies, it bears witness to the extraordinary capacity of the human spirit; the fight for survival, redemption and the want for change.
“Unfortunately, violence against women exists in all corners of the world,” says Heather Redfern, Executive Director of The Cultch, who is bringing the play to Vancouver in partnership with Diwali Fest. “By telling their personal stories… we are acknowledging its existence and can begin healing and making societal change.”
This play is particularly relevant due to the current situation facing British Columbia. “I am bringing Nirbhaya to the York Theatre because I believe we are all responsible for breaking the silence,” Redfern said. “Seeing this play together is one action we can take to make change for girls and women in our neighbourhoods and around the world.”
Diwali Fest co-producers Rohit Chokhani and Vineeta Minhas are proud and excited to showcase a true reflection of the cultural diversity. This production is not only controversial but pushes boundaries, making theatre and performing arts equitable and inclusive within the mainstream. “Nirbhaya is raising our hands in union and standing up for what is very much needed in our society: representing marginalized voices and standing in support with them” says Rohit Chokhani.
Nirbhaya premiered at the prestigious Edinburgh Fringe Festival, in August 2013. It won the coveted Amnesty International Freedom of Expression Award, given to an outstanding Fringe production that raises awareness for human rights, and the Scotsman Fringe First in addition to the Herald Angel Award for “Outstanding New Play”.
Watch the trailer below:
When: November 3 to 14
Where: York Theatre (679 Commercial Drive)
When: November 3 to 15
Where: Various locations
Vancity Buzz is a proud sponsor of Diwali Fest