kiskiKAHANI (the Ramayana Project)

300 Ramayanas and Counting . . .
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Date(s) - 20 Jun 2012 until 25 Jun 2012
11:00 AM - 5:00 PM

Open Space

Continuing our work with the marginalised characters from the Ramayana, we have a theatre workshop at Open Space. Read on!

Narratives, both modern and folk, portray the rakshasas and the asuras as monstrous ogre-like creatures that terrorise the humans and sometimes the gods. But how do we see these characters that remain ‘outside’ a text? With their roles, which remain central to the narrative can we ignore them? Would our narratives change if the rakshasas did not appear? Are good and evil co-dependent? Can one exist without the other?

Today, as we are well into the 21st century, do we look at our asuras and rakshasas differently? Would the world be any different if Rama or Vishnu were to re-incarnate now? How would the Ramayana be different if there were no asuras and rakshasas?

Were they a personification of the latent evil within us- the Mr Hyde in us we refuse to acknowledge? What are the counterparts of the Asuras in Christian, Zoroastrian, Buddhist and Greek mythologies? Have they left a lineage just like Rama and are their children still living amongst us? If yes, then where and how?

Through story-reading and story-telling, theater and mask making in paper maché with painting we will unfold for ourselves what it must mean to be an asura or a rakshas. Who knows, we may even surprise ourselves with a plot of a new modern or even a futuristic Ramayana!


Dipalle Parmar engages in creative writing, art and manages her otherness. An award winning interior and furniture designer, educator and gifted psychic, she revels in traveling incessantly into the hearts of people and stories. Her paintings and art works have been exhibited since 1999 and have found their way into collections in Paris and Mumbai.

The founder of Sonny Art Lab which engages in imparting performing and fine arts education to children, she has also taught creative writing and visual arts at Flame Liberal arts school, Symbiosis Institute of Design and MIT design school.


Workshop Details:

Date: 20 June, 2012 – 25 June, 2012

Time: 11am – 5pm

For more details please get in touch with us at Open Space, B 301 Kanchanjunga, Kanchan Lane, Off Law college road. Phone no 020-25457371


Schedule Break-up:

Day 1:

Introduction to the subject, reading and story-telling.

Understanding and relating to the life and purpose of asuras and rakshasas.


Day 2:

Ice breaker with story-telling by the narrator and theater exercise.

Interactive discussion- Through theater, participants will be encouraged to explore their favorite Asura or Rakshas. At the same time the participants will make sketches of the once we arrive at how the asura would appear today and why.

Oral story telling of what this asura would do if he were a part of your life today, wire mesh and paper maché modeling of the face mask of that asura or rakshas.


Day 3:

Acting out your Asura. A story outline will be created to fit your asura plus more insights and interactions on how the Ramayana could have been different if…


Day 4:

Paper maché expected to have dried well enough. Painting begins!

Writing the story created the day before and assigning dialogues to your asura.


Day 5:

Depicting the victory or defeat of your asura on the mask itself by creative use of the stationery provided.

Final presentation of the theater act! Masks on!