Saturday, August 29, 2009

Royal Shakespeare Company’s Arabian Nights

The Royal Shakespeare Company will be putting on their version of the Arabian Nights this winter (Dec-Jan). Starring as Scheherazade is Ayesha Dharker, a film actress from the UK known for her roles in The Terrorist (1999), Star Wars II, and the TV mini-series of the Arabian Nights (2000).

more info about her at the link and in the excerpt of the article below:

from Indian Express

Alaka Sahani
Posted: Friday , Aug 28, 2009 at 0106 hrs

Ayesha Dharker’s recent Mumbai visit, though hectic, was an opportunity to chill out before she gets busy with her next big role — the lead in the Royal Shakespeare Company’s new production, Arabian Nights.

The actor, fresh out of her role as Tara in the long-running soap Coronation Street, stars as Scheherazade in Arabian Nights, which will be staged at the Courtyard Theatre in Stratford-Upon-Avon from December 15, 2009 to January 30, 2010. “The way this all came together is like a story from the Arabian Nights,” says Dharker, who was in Mumbai recently.

This project is the realisation of Dharker’s very personal dream. “I have always wanted to work with the RSC and have waited for the right opportunity to come along. I have also been drawn to the stories of Arabian Nights and have made a great effort to find different translations over the years,” says the actress.

Dharker plays a character called Scheherazade who is the storyteller for the “thousand and one nights”. For the play is based on the original stories from Arabian Nights, she will rehearse in London till November, before moving to Stratford. However, Dharker feels as if she has been preparing for this role for a very long time. “Sometimes a dream role can come along and really take your breath away because you realise that you have been imagining yourself in a story and it seems to materialise around you,” she says.

The regularity with which this London-based actor bags major international projects shows how roles are no longer stereotypical for Indian actors abroad. “They being typecast may have been the case a few years ago, things are very different now. Producers, directors and writers are very interested in making their cast as vibrant as possible. Were this not true, I would not have been offered roles like Joan of Arc, roles in Doctor Who, and on Coronation Street as a regular character,” she says.

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