April 11, 2024

The fascinating theatrical play titled Silence, a co-production of Tara Theatre, The Donmar Warehouse, and Queen's Theatre Hornchurch, delves into the forgotten tales of the 1947 Indian subcontinent division. It uses group storytelling to convey a shared history that is based on first-hand recollections of people who lived through the last days of the British Raj.

Aaron Gill and Tia Dutt for Tara Theatre's Silence
Photo credits: Harry Elletson

Sonali Bhattacharyya, Gurpreet Kaur Bhatti, Ishy Din, and Alexandra Wood are among the writers who have adapted these stories for the stage. The play, Silence, was commissioned to commemorate the 75th anniversary of the partition and is based on Kavita Puri's well-known book "Partition Voices: Untold British Stories." Iqbal Khan is directing the current version of the show, while Abdul Shayek directed the original and developed it for touring.

Alexandra D'Sa and Tia Dutt for Tara Theatre's Silence.
Photo credits: Harry Elletson

A group of gifted authors, including Sonali Bhattacharyya, Gurpreet Kaur Bhatti, Ishy Din, and Alexandra Wood, worked together to create the script. Together, they have produced an engaging theatrical production that gives voice to a shared history that has frequently gone hidden by bringing various true stories to life.

Asif Khan for Tara Theatre's Silence.
Photo credits: Harry Elletson

The purpose of this production is to provide a voice to the witnesses of that era who are still with us, as well as to throw light on an important historical event that has affected modern Britain. "Silence" provides a distinctive viewpoint on the repercussions of the division and its involvement in forming our collective history by presenting these little-known tales.

Mamta Kaash and Aaron Gill for Tara Theatre's Silence.
Photo credits: Harry Elletson

As the Executive Director and CEO of Tara Theatre, Helen Jeffreys acknowledged the long-lasting influence that Abdul Shayek's vision and commitment have had on the theater community. She expressed her sincere gratitude for the chance to continue sharing this significant work. In addition to expressing his respect for the original production, Iqbal Khan, the director of the touring version of Silence, expressed his dedication to upholding Abdul Shayek's legacy. 

Mamta Kaash and Bhasker Patel for Tara Theatre's Silence.
Photo credits:  Harry Elletson

We are reminded of the outstanding group that graced the stage during the Donmar Warehouse production as we wait to hear the names of the tour's cast members: Renu Brindle, Sujaya Dasgupta, Nimmi Harasgama, Bhasker Patel, Jay Saighal, Rehan Sheikh, and Martin Turner. Their performances surely played a part in the profound effect that Silence has had on audiences, and we can anticipate that this legacy of superb storytelling will continue with the future tour.

Bhasker Patel for Tara Theatre's Silence.
Photo credits: Harry Elletson

A major turning point in Tara Theatre's history, Silence is evidence of the vision of Abdul Shayek's lasting influence. We are reminded of the value of telling untold tales and providing a voice to people who have experienced historical events that have influenced our present behavior. This will keep inspiring and educating audiences with its collective efforts, creating a deeper awareness of the complexities of our common history.

Find out more

Related Posts

Stay in the know

Get a digest of what's new and exciting from us

Thank you! Your submission has been received!

Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form