The Diwali Fest celebrations continue into November. Presented by the Diwali Celebration Society, Diwali Fest opened on October 11 with the Western Canadian premiere of Piya Behrupiya (Twelfth Night) and runs until November 30. The Diwali Fest events scheduled for November include the Western Canadian premiere of Brothel #9 by South Asian playwright Anusree Roy, the return of “Chai House”, and a staged reading of the world-renowned, critically acclaimed play Bhopal, by Canadian playwright Rahul Varma.
Produced and presented by Touchstone Theatre as a part of Diwali Fest, Brothel #9 takes place November 17-27 at the Vancity Culture Lab at The Cultch. The Dora Award-winning production is a provocative and moving story about the power of the human spirit and its ability to triumph in the face of corruption and suffering. Tickets are available at thecultch.com
After the success of “Diwali Downtown” in Vancouver and Surrey, Diwali Fest is excited to co-present another signature event – this one with the Evergreen Cultural Centre in Coquitlam on November 20 at 6pm. “Chai House” is a South Asian-themed, cabaret style evening which will feature Bollywood dancer Karima Essa, a Bharatanatyam performance by Arno Kamolika, spoken word and Tabla performances by Diwali Fest Youth performers, Bollywood Belly Dance by Get Bent Dance & Yoga School, a classical Indian music performance by Tom Hunter, a live music performance by Raga Mantra Trio, and more. Tickets for “Chai House” are available at diwalifest.ca
The Diwali Celebration Society is also thrilled to welcome Canadian playwright Rahul Varma to Diwali Fest for a staged reading of his world-renowned, critically acclaimed play Bhopal at the Firehall Arts Centre on Monday, November 21 at 8pm. Commemorating the 30thanniversary of the world’s worst industrial disaster, the Bhopal gas tragedy claimed over 25,000 lives and currently affects nearly 500,000 people with neurological and respiratory illness, birth defects, and disability and malformation among children. The play is a reminder that the frequency of industrial disasters is on the rise all over the world with oil spills, pipeline leaks, hazardous chemicals being dumped into our oceans, and closer to home, the recent disaster in the town of Lac-Mégantic in Quebec. Diwali Fest Artistic Producer Rohit Chokhani will direct this reading and facilitate a post-reading Q&A with Rahul Varma. Tickets for this event are pay-what-you-can at the Firehall Arts Centre.