The Indian community of Saint-Louis joins forces to celebrate 75 years of Indian independence with “Samarpan”


The Indian community of St. Louis joins together to celebrate 75 years of Indian independence.

“Samarpan” is an artistic interpretation of the struggle for Indian freedom against British colonial rule. This dance drama was conceptualized, written and directed by an American artist – Mr. Prasanna Kasthuri, Artistic Director of Soorya Performing Arts in St. Louis.

The world premiere of Samarpan will take place on Saturday, August 13, 2022 at the Blanche M. Touhill Performing Arts Center. The music is composed by veteran Indian musician Mr. Tirumale Srinivasan (Chami) and will involve Indian playwright – Mr. Gaurang Bhavsaar (MFA in Drama from University of Baroda). Dancers include 2017 and 2019 Fox Teen Talent Dance winner Ms. Samanvita Kasthuri; Ms. Bianca RadhaKrishna (India); Manipuri Dancer Sanjeeb Bhattacharya (Cincinnati) and Amarnath Ghosh (India). Veteran dance master Pulikeshi Kasthuri (India) will offer professional guidance and production support.

The historical events presented at Samarpan will be represented in five languages ​​(Hindi, Kannada, Telugu, Tamil and Bengali) by more than 120 artists from India, the United States and Canada. This mega dance drama honors freedom fighters and shines a light on this struggle with the entire community of St. Louis and beyond. The Indian community comes together to show their gratitude for this long and hard won struggle for freedom and never forget those who gave their lives for us.

This production is unique because it focuses on the “reason”, the “effects” and the “solution” to colonial aggression on Indian soil. It depicts events from the 16th century, marking the arrival of the East India Company, working its way to dominance in the 1860s, later facing resistance from North-South freedom fighters , East-West and all parts of India, culminating in the events leading to freedom in 1947.

It reminds us of the unforgettable sacrifices of the brave men and women who fought valiantly to free India from the chains of slavery. It’s a glimpse of history like never before! A reminder for our generation and a revelation for children.

This world premiere will showcase the contribution of great ideas such as Ahimsa (Non-Violence), Satyagraha (Agitation for Truth) and Asahakara (Non-Cooperation) – the original ideas of Mahatma Gandhi. These ideas have inspired the world to peacefully express dissent. This idea of ​​nonviolence has become the dominant thought of freedom seekers around the world, including leaders like Martin Luther King and Nelson Mandela.

“Jo shaheed hue hai unkee zara yaad karo kurbani”.

(Remember the sacrifices of freedom fighters, who sacrificed their lives so that we could be free.)

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