Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Martin Moran’s award winning show tours India, hopes to spark a debate on sexual violence against boys

Aristotle said the function of theatre is “to heal the city”. Martin Moran’s hugely ​​transformative one-man-shows are all set to tour India.​ ​Producer Poorna Jagannathan, who also produced ‘Nirbhaya’ earlier this year, hopes the plays will spark a debate on a much needed conversation - that of the epidemic of sexual violence against boys.

​​This November, Moran’s award winning one-man-shows, THE TRICKY PART and ALL THE RAGE will be seen by audiences in Mumbai, Bangalore and Delhi.

Both plays are testimonial in nature- drawn from Moran’s real life experiences. ​​THE TRICKY PART, one of the most heralded one-man plays in recent memory, tells the true story of sexuality, spirituality and the mystery of human experience.​ ​​​ALL THE RAGE is Moran’s second award winning one-man-show. It’s a complimentary piece and as powerful.

​​Deftly crafted by director Seth Barrish who will be touring as well, Moran offers a firsthand perspective on sexual abuse. Full of complexity, honesty and surprising humor, Martin’s shows leave audiences transformed and deeply engaged with a subject matter previously inaccessible to most.​

Jagannathan says of her decision to bring these plays to India, “​​Today, 1 in 2 BOYS are sexually abused in India. That means half of all boys in India are exposed to an unwanted sexual interaction.  It’s mind-boggling. But the culture of extreme shame surrounding male sexual abuse prevents survivors from seeking help or healing.

Most times, violence is internalized and cycles of abuse just continue. At a time we are trying to combat sexual violence against women, we remain relatively blind to sexual violence against boys and men. I’m hoping, like NIRBHAYA did, these plays too can pry open this difficult yet vital conversation. I strongly believe that ending sexual violence against boys is one of the key to ending the cycles of violence.”

Ministry of Women and Child Development study called ‘Study on Child Abuse India 2007’ revealed that more than 53% of children in India have probably been sexually abused. Of these, 53 percent were boys and 47 percent girls.(http://wcd.nic.in/childabuse.pdf)

The ministry emphasized that around 70 percent of abused children never reported the matter to anyone and children of all socio-economic groups were found to be equally vulnerable. (Broken down, the statistics are as follows: 1 in 2 children are sexually abused: 1 in 2 boys, 1 in 2 girls with there being a higher incidence rate among boys in some studies.) Human Resource Watch also acknowledges that in majority of cases abuse remains under-reported because children are reticent to raise a voice and if they do, often caregivers themselves hush them up. www.hrw.org/reports/2013/02/07/breaking-silence

Starting this month, the two plays, each 80 minute long, will tour along with Martin Moran, director Seth Barrish and producer Poorna Jagannathan across Mumbai, Delhi and Bangalore. The plays run in Mumbai between October 30 and November 2, 2014 at the much-awaited Literature Live! The Mumbai LitFest held at the National Centre of Performing Arts (NCPA) and Prithvi Theatre. Subsequently, both plays will be staged at the Rangashankara theatre in Bangalore between November 11 and 13, and reach Delhi to the India Habitat Centre on November 15 and 16, 2014.​​

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