IN HOUSE-SEMINAR: Making NativePeer. The process of transformative aesthetics
This in-house seminar focuses on the dramaturgical work behind NativePeer, a transcultural adaptation of Henrik Ibsen’s text Peer Gynt within India's post-colonial context.
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NativePeer, 2015 (Photo: Kamaluddin Nilu)
Kamaluddin Nilu staged NativePeer in 2015. He will share why it was necessary to make a new text that would communicate with present-day Indian readers and audience as their own. The fundamental task was to negotiate the source text within the socio-political-cultural context of colonially mediated modernity, which represents the juncture between tradition and modernity of contemporary India.
Such an encountering process is all about transportation, displacement, and replacement. It is a socio-political-cultural negotiation process. It is a game between co-existence of elements and materials, loss of elements and materials as well as inclusion of new elements and materials. The sensible selection and distribution of elements and materials along with their reasoning is what I would term ‘politics in aesthetics’.
I will argue that this notion could benefit from Erika Fischer-Lichte’s concept of ‘interweaving’. The end result of this process is what Fischer-Lichte calls ‘transformative aesthetics’, which she regards as a new theatre aesthetic process.
Kamaluddin Nilu (1955) is a theatre director and independent researcher. He is a guest researcher at the Centre for Ibsen Studies, where he also was part of the project Ibsen between Cultures. He has been Chair Professor of Theatre Department, Hyderabad Central University, India, Research Fellow of the International Research Center Interweaving Performance Cultures, Freie Universität, Berlin, and also Associate Professor of Dramatic Arts, University of Chittagong, Bangladesh.
Kamaluddin Nilu was Artistic Director of Centre for Asian Theatre (CAT) during the period 1994-2006 and Festival Director of International Ibsen Festival 2006 and 2009, Dhaka. He has been member of the jury for the International Ibsen Prize.