9 Jun 2019

An Indian epic novel makes it to the stage

From Standing Room Only, 2:26 pm on 9 June 2019

It's a brave playwright who takes on a much loved and multi-generational epic novel, and tries to turn it into something that works on stage. That's exactly what UK writer Kristine Landon-Smith and Tamasha Theatre, Britain's leading Asian theatre company, did with Rohinton Mistry's Man Booker Prize nominated novel A Fine Balance. It's set in Bombay during the chaos and heartbreak of 'The Emergency' - when then-Prime Minister Indira Gandhi's government "cleaned up the city" by driving thousands of poor from their homes in the 1970s and 80s. Auckland Theatre Company and Prayas Theatre are working together to perform the play for the first time in New Zealand. Lynn Freeman spoke to Kristine in the UK to find out why she took on what, on paper, seems like an impossible challenge: A fine balance premieres on the 14th of June at Auckland's Q Theatre.