I Will Save My Land!
Mati is a young girl who wants her very own land. I Will Save My Land! reveals the battle between land ownership, women's inheritance and the greed of larger corporations to exploit their lands for mining.
This performance is based on the book I Will Save My Land! by Rinchin, illustrated by Sagar Kolwankar, and published by Tulika. It has been adapted with original music and illustration for The Red Curtain Project.
Thresh and the Red Curtain Project is proud to partner with Tulika, an independent, multilingual publisher of children's books that pioneered a fresh wave in Indian publishing when it was founded in 1996 (winner of the 2019 London Book Fair Award for Excellence in Literary Translation Initiative).
Why is this story important?
RCP's Artistic Director, Preeti Vasudevan, explains the importance of I Will Save My Land!:
The Storyteller's Toolkit
The techniques an Indian classical dancer uses to create an emotional mood are grouped under the term "saatvika abhinaya" (SAAT-vika ab-in-EYE-a). In particular, the face is a key tool for communicating emotion—Indian dancers train for years to perfect these expressions!
Watch how Preeti manipulates different aspects of facial expression (eyes, lips, eyebrows) to create the emotional effect.
(Note: These videos do not have voiceover/subtitles.)
Every culture uses its hand gestures for expression: in bharatanatyam (Indian classical dance) these gestures are classified in minute detail. Each gesture has specific meanings and applications. Each video includes the name of different facial expressions, or "saatvika abhinaya," and hand gestures, or "mudras" in Sanskrit (the classical language of India) along with examples and applications.
Commentary & Analysis
In the video below, Preeti explains how she uses the classical gestural vocabulary of Indian dance to tell the story:
The Red Curtain Drawing Challenge
We challenge you to create a drawing inspired by Mati! She was excited to grow many things in the field that her grandmother gifted her. What would you grow if you had your own field? Draw what your land would look like!
Send us your drawings at firstname.lastname@example.org and you'll see them here on the site.
Land Rights in India
Learn about the issues affecting local villages and farmers like Mati and her grandmother. Many villagers in India find themselves uprooted from their lands, losing their joy of life and livelihoods through farming.
LAND RIGHTS IN INDIA
Meet Our Global Collaborators
Kamala Sankaram, Composer
New York, New York
"I'm a composer and teacher who likes to write music for opera and theater. My dad is from Andhra Pradesh in Southern India, so I'm always looking for ways to combine Indian and European classical music. I've been thrilled to write two children's operas that do this: The Jungle Book, written for the Glimmerglass Festival, and Monkey and Francine in the City Tigers, written for Houston Grand Opera. I also have a band called Bombay Rickey. We love it when people come to our shows and dance, so I hope we'll see you at one soon."
Shreya Mehta, Illustrator
New York, New York
Shreya Mehta is an award-winning visual artist who confronts questions of identity and spirituality in her vibrant and eclectic practice. Shreya was born in India and raised in Antwerp, Belgium, where she attended the Royal Academy of Art as its first woman of Indian origin. Mehta’s work has a global presence and has been exhibited at galleries and fairs in New York, Dubai, and Mumbai. See more of Shreya's work at her website www.artshreya.com