After Death

by Vikram Mohan

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About the project :

"After Death" is a Contemporary Dance Theater Project which will use the rituals and traditional folklore of forgotten tribes from the interiors in India and fuse it with western dance forms to bring Indian culture to a global level.

The campaign is a unique concept of not only bringing the rich Indian history, thousands of years old to a global platform, but also promoting the almost extinct a number of rich tribal communities.

‘After Death’- a spiritual tribal fold journey is based on the Bhils (or Bheels) based out of MP, Gujarat and Rajasthan. Bhils are also settled in the Tharparkar District of District of Pakistan. They speak the Bhil languages, a subgroup of the Western Zone of the Indo-Aryan languages.

As per the legends, a BHIL man meets with an accident. After the accident, his mother, wife and friends go to Dungerdav ( a Bhil God) to save him from dying. They perform all the life saving religious rituals but despite all the efforts, the man dies. It is then followed by the man’s disgruntled soul disturbing the village for ages. Legend says that to counter the disturbances created by the departed souls, the tribals introduced a concept of Gathla pratha ( It is a rock or stone which is henceforth supposed to contain the spirit of the departed soul by giving the soul a resting place and therefore save the villages and tribes from being disturbed). This is one of the oldest rituals of the Bhils tribes, and dates back to almost a thousand years.

We want to create a dance form which uses a lot of water and numerous props to enliven the beautiful stories from the interiors of our beautiful and culturally rich country. We are in the process of auditioning and identifying 20 young dancers to be a part of this initiative. This dance form will require special training and very specific dancing skills and enacting talent. The premier date for After Death’s world premier is 13th August at Kamani Theater at New Delhi.

After having worked with some of the best talent at the institutions, we took up additional in depth research by travelling to MP, Gujarat, Rajasthan along with the PhD scholar Miss Ruchi Kumar. This was to ensure that the true essence of the tribal folklore in not lost in the attempt. The detailed research and study that we have put in makes it a compelling piece of art story, waiting to unfold.

We now plan to have auditions and finalize on the 20 dancers that we need to execute the project.
Please help us in sharing the word and to bring this amazing concept to life

Project Team:
Vikram Mohan (Artist, Director and Choreographer):
Vikram is an artist director of Voxpop Dancers India & India International Aerial club. He attended International choreographer week-2014 in Tilbrug, Netherlands and is a visiting faculty and choreographer in the prestigious National school of Drama, Delhi; Madhya Pradesh school of drama; IP University etc.

His past works include “Rise why not us”, “Life in Darkness”
He has worked as Head Choreographer in project "Aakashan" In New Delhi Directed by Catherine Daniel In collaboration with Kalakar Trust Vertical Circus, Australian government and ICCR in 2014.
Vikram has attended Lucia Marthas Lucia Marthas Institute Dance Academy in Amsterdam (Museum plan studio, Rustenburg Studio) and North Holland Studio for three weeks as observer.
He Trains young dancers by extending their imagination and performance skills and is working on new ideas with Indian flock Artists.
Choreographer in “Harvest Time” Velno festival produced by Mundial Productions, Holland under the direction of Jacques Van Meel. Bringing together artists from Kenya, Ghana, Brazil and India in 2012.
His work as a choreographer for Theatre include:
“A Midsummer Night’s Dream” directed by Mr Anoop Trivadi in 2013 for IP University.
“Sab Thaat Pada Rahai Jaiga” directed by Mr Ranjeet Kapoor for National School of Drama New Delhi India in 2011.

“Sab Thaat Pada Rahai Jaiga” directed by Mr Ranjeet Kapoor, for Drama Teach in 2011.
“Apna Apna Bhagya” directed by Mr V.k Sharma in 2008.
“Gipsy Jatak” directed by Mr K.K Rajan In 2007.
“Pair Giant” Directed Mr V.k Sharma in 2006 including an acting role
Sanskrit Play “Madhyam vayoga” in an actor’s role, directed by Mr Robin Das in 2006
Extensive experience with theatre groups such as Khilona Theatre group, Dramatech, MGR entertainment and Dramabaaz group.

Bhushan Bhatt (Adaptation, Lyrics and Associate Director):
Mr. Bhatt is a writer, director, music director, lyricist, singer and an actor. He started his career with Rangmandla (Bharat Bhavan) there after moving to Rangayana (Mysore), Ninasam Repertory (Heggodu) and Shri Ram Centre (Delhi). A prodigy of former NSD Director Late Shri B.V Karanth, Mr. Bhatt was his assistant for 14 years. Associated with theatre for over 3 decades, he has worked in more than 200 plays of various languages and dialects like Hindi, Marathi, Kannada, Bundeli, Malavi etc. He has adapted plays from Kannada and Marathi to Hindi. Also composed music of more than 60 plays of various languages. Mr. Bhatt has worked in the Jhabua Development and Communication Project (JDCP) department of ISRO, Ahemdabad as an actor, writer, director, singer and music director for over 600 episodes based on various social issues to communicate with the tribes of Jhabua. He has written story,screenplay and dialogues for a Chattisgarhi feature film 'Chattisgarh Mahatari' and a Hindi film 'Dekh Tamasha Ravan Ka' which is under production. He has written 42 episodes of 'Malgudi ka Narbhakshi' (Malgudi days).
Mr. Bhatt has directed around 35 plays and originally written and directed more than 20, mainly 'Jo Ladhe Deen Ke Heth' (Based on Tatya Tope) ,'Ravan', 'Mooshak Puran' ,'Meera','Nannu Makoda','A Girl..' etc. His scripts cover a wide range of topics like bonded labor, racism, depression, patriotism etc. He has also written play stories and features for children.
Besides being a composer, a play writer, director, etc he is also a Wild Life Film Maker.
In the year 2003, he served as a creative head for in house production of Doordarshan,Delhi.
Currently, he is working on sound anthropology and documenting the work of Shri B.V Karanth under the name of 'Raag Karanth' which is a nation wide documentation program on the methodology of B.V Karanth's theatre music and is first of its kind. He has been working non stop with the tribes of M.P and is making a digital library on the Baiga and Bhil tribes. Mr. Bhatt has also conducted music workshops in NSD, Bangalore, National College (Bangalore), Hyderabad university and MPSD. He has also conducted theatre workshop for the students of National Military School, Dholpur in November-December 2014. In January 2015 Adopted the play 'Miser by Molière' for second year NSD students. The show was named 'Apna Rakh Paraya Chakh'. In the month of April 2015, conducted a theatre workshop in Jhabua with 300 students which included tribal children and students from the Deaf and Dumb School of Jhabua. Directed and conducted music for 'Mooshak Puran' and 'Jo ladhe deen ke het.'
In June 2015, he wrote and conceived music for 'Aranyagatha', the first production which specifically used tribal stories, music and dialect.

Kanhaiyalal Kaithwas (Art Director):
Born on 11 August 1970. Received diploma in design and direction from the National School of Drama in the year 2000. Active as an actor, a director and designer for last 30 years. Acted in more than 100 plays and performed in many foreign countries along with performances in India. Conducted more than 40 theatre workshops all over the country. Directed more than 50 plays which include – Madhyam Vyayog, King Lear, Mid Summer Night Dream, Tin Ka Nanha Sipahi, Duvidha, Khel Guru Ka. Ravan, Suraj Kahan Se Ugta Hai, Satya Harishcnahra, Chor-Chakor, Lachchhedar Guchchha, Os ki Bund, Tabut. Rustam Sohrab, Kagrnurs, Bahrupia etc. Has experience of working with the eminent theatre directors of country like: Satish Dave, Bansi Kaul. B.V. Karanth. Bharat Sharma, Prabhat Ganguli, Nasiruddin Shah. Kirti Jain. Anuradha Kapur, Robin Das, Ranjeet Kano, Neelam Mansingh, Roysten Abel, Rita Ganguli, Devendra Raj Ankur and Ram Gopal Bajaj etc.
Worked for 5 years with Rang Vidushak on clown methodology style under the direction of Bansi Kaul. Worked with the prisoners of Bilaspur Jail for one month. Performed 'Nay Lakha' at Asian Art Festival, Japan under the direction of Anuradha Kapoor. Worked as an Actor and art director for feature films – Swaraj (Anwar Jamal), Chigurad Kanasu (Naga Bharna), Wounded (Krishna Mishra) What is Cooking Stella (Deepa Mehta), Dharti Ab Bhi Ghoorn Rahi Hai (Rajesh Tyagi), and Tv serials – Kisse Ek Nazar, Premchand Ki Kahaniyan and Katha Santa etc. Worked on Folk Art and Culture of Malwa, Nimad and Jhabua under the fellowship of the National School of Drama. Worked on Performing Arts of Avadhanchal (Uttar Pradesh), under the Junior fellowship. Worked for 2 years as production co-ordinator for the Hyderabad University Theatre Repertory. Received 'Kat* Samrnan' by the Government of Madhya Pradesh in 2010. Awarded with Iftekhar Rang Saunas' in 2013. Working at present as an Assistant Theatre Director with Madhya Pradesh Natya Vidyalaya.

Kumaradas T N (Light Designer):

Kerala born NSD alumnus Kumaradas T N is an acclaimed actor, director and designer at theatre. He has begun his theatre training from School of Drama, Thrissur, Kerala in 2005 and further he completed graduation on Theatre Technique & Design from National School of Drama in 2009. Kumaradas has since worked in various parts of India and presently heads the Design department of the Madhya Pradesh School of Drama, Bhopal.
He has worked in folk and traditional performance art, new media projects, video and lens based projects, lighting and design scene works, experimented with new materials. His directorial ventures started from NSD with “Trojan women” in 2009. Further he has directed and designed “Trojan women: A love story, Short stories about Uffff, Personal and Impersonal and Three Penny Opera. His recent directorial and designed project was Nagamanadala in Ireland, which performed first time by Indian immigrant community in indo-Irish History. He also has been devising his ongoing multilingual Folk-Ritualistic theatre production on Surpankha Episode, titled as “A black Talcum Powder Project” in Kerala.

Risks and Challenges :

Theatre is a tricky business, and there is always possibility of an actor falling ill, breaking a leg or worse...forgetting their lines!

We're confident that we have put together a great team who will be able to rise to the inevitable challenges which occur, and have a successful track record of creating powerful theater pieces. Your backing will give us the essential financial support we need to create powerful drama.

We really believe in the work we do and are 100% passionate about it, so we will do all we can to overcome any obstacles and make "After Death" a success for our audiences.            

Other Ways You Can Help :

Contribution is not always necessary to be through monetary funds. If you like our work and profile, you can support our cause by  promoting our campaign on social media, spreading message and encouraging people to contribute to the campaign.

"After Death" the spiritual journey Part-1

"After Death" the spiritual journey Part-2