Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Lanka: The Prologue

Lanka ... The land where once a great battle waged between good and evil .  Evil .... Ravana, the great Rakshasa king , might have been evil to the eyes of most humans, but the only true mistake he ever made was to lay his hands on another mans wife , a moment of weakness and his pride to blame for the rest of his actions. However, to the Rakshasas he was a leader par excellence and the only one who could command the vast forces of Lanka. Ravana  faced defeat at the hands of Rama and his forces. It was considered his destiny to die at the hands of the Rama - the lord himself in human form .  After Ravana's defeat, Vibhishana , his brother , was entrusted with the throne of Lanka and under his leadership emerged the brave and just Rakshasa clan called the Lankans. However, it was only a matter of time before Surpanakha , the treacherous sister of Ravana assassinated Vibhishana and took over the throne of Lanka. Her master plan reveals itself - Sita's (Rama's wife) kidnapping , the great war of Lanka , Ravana's death - all orchestrated pieces in her ascent to the throne of Lanka. Surpanakha - the epitome of deceit ...

Lanka now stands divided between two Rakshasa clans, the Mayas slaves under the dark power of Surpanakha on one side, and the Lankans banished to the forest under their leader Maveera on the other. Vishwamitra , the wise sage and friend to Vibhishana visits the Lankans and reveals the ancient prophecy that the one who carries the royal blood line of the Rakshasas will bring peace once again to Lanka and that he or she alone will have the true power to bring together the Lankans and the Mayas . Only few others in the kingdom knew of the prophecy, Surpanakha being one of them. Her devious mind tells her that the only way to sway the prophecy to her strength is to have a child of her own who will carry the royal blood line. She chooses the most powerful Rakshasa lord to be the father of her child , a logical choice, but her desperation to have a 'son' and only a son to follow after her as the ruler of Lanka blinds her .
Want to find out what happens next? Come watch Lanka - An Epic on Stage ...

LANKA - An Epic on Stage

Get ready for an audio-visual feast in the month of March and April! Agni Productions is gearing up to present a one of a kind stage production called Lanka - An Epic on Stage. Lanka is a unique stage production that combines story-telling, dance and martial arts to narrate an epic tale. The presentation will be entirely in English interlaced with contemporary dance and martial arts and draws inspiration from varied influences.

Lanka tells the fictional story about what transpires in Lanka after the Ramayana, the great Indian epic. The production is the brainchild of writer and director Prakash Mohandas – the founder of Agni Productions, a sister concern of Agni - The Dance Company. Prakash has been an active member of the South Asian community in the spheres of dance, theatre and music for several years. Lanka is the confluence of his vision to bring together aspects of various dance styles, martial arts and theatre along with a cinematic feel to the stage.
The production will be supplemented by breathtaking stage setting, costumes and theatrical make-up. The visual element will be enhanced by professionally managed lighting and sound to present an unparalleled experience on stage. The team recently conducted a trailer shoot for Lanka in Austin, consisting of 40+ cast and crew members and directed by Sushma Khadepaun-Parmar from Cutting Chai Productions. The trailer is expected to be released in mid-February.
The scale of the production is unprecedented in comparison to any project by the South Asian community in Austin. Lanka brings together a cast and crew of 60 individuals comprising actors, dancers, choreographers, stunt specialists and voice artists. The production crew also includes set designers, light and sound technicians, make-up artistes and costume and set designers. Additionally, Lanka boasts a completely original and professionally composed musical score, by up and coming music director Rohan Joseph, which is sure to enthrall audiences. Team Lanka spans professionals and amateurs from the Austin area, many of whom started working on the production details almost a year ago.
Lanka plans to tour Texas in March and April 2011 with scheduled performances in Austin, Houston, San Antonio and Dallas. The production is also planning a nationwide tour after that.
Lanka premieres in Austin on March 20th 2011 at the Westlake Performing Arts Center. The other shows are as follows:
March 27th: Houston @ Cullen Theatre (Wortham Center)
April 10th: San Antonio @ Carver Community Cultural Theatre
April 17th: Dallas @ Granville Arts Center
Agni Productions is committed to supporting community and humanitarian causes with its events. Part of the proceeds from Lanka will be donated to Asha for Education, a non-profit, voluntary organization dedicated to bringing socio-economic change in India by using the medium of education. Asha for Education is a federally tax-exempt organization as described in IRS Code Section 501(c) (3).
Lanka aims to redefine the stageplay experience, and is sure to captivate Austin area theatre, music and dance lovers with a never-before seen spectacle. Tickets are on sale and selling fast. For more information regarding tickets, sponsorship or general queries, please visit www.lankaproduction.com, send an email to agniproductions@gmail.com, or call 512.299.7766 or 281-686-6636.